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Starred Review. Grade 9 Up—When Deanna's father catches her having sex in a car when she is 13, her life is drastically changed. Two years later, he still can't look her in the eye, and though Tommy is the only boy she's been with, she is branded the school slut. Her entire family watches her as though she is likely to sleep with anyone she sees, and Tommy still smirks at and torments her when she sees him. Her two best friends have recently begun dating, and Deanna feels like an intruder. She tries to maintain a close relationship with her older brother, but Darren and his girlfriend are struggling as teenage parents. Deanna learns to protect herself by becoming outwardly tough, but feels her isolation acutely. Her only outlet is her journal in which she writes the story of an anonymous girl who has the same experiences and feelings that she does. Through this, readers see the potential that Deanna cannot identify in herself. This is a heartbreaking look at how a teenager can be defined by one mistake, and how it shapes her sense of self-worth. This is realistic fiction at its best. Zarr's storytelling is excellent; Deanna's reactions to the painful things said to her will resonate with any reader who has felt like an outsider. It is an emotionally charged story, with language appropriate to the intensity of the feelings. Story of a Girl is recommended for both teens and the adults who live and work with them.—Stephanie L. Petruso, Anne Arundel County Public Library, Odenton, MD
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*Starred Review* Deanna was 13 when her father caught her and 17-year-old Tommy having sex. Three years later, she is still struggling with the repercussions: how Tommy jokingly made her into the school slut; how the story became legend in her small town; how her father looked at her then--and now doesn't look at her at all. Her brother, Darren, has mistakes to handle, too: he lives with his girlfriend and their baby in his parents' basement. And while Deanna's mother seems numb, her father is perpetually angry and depressed. Meanwhile, in a misguided search for love brought on by the confusion of seeing Tommy again, Deanna intentionally hurts her two closest friends. Although she's more aware than most how a single event can define a person, Deanna still struggles to gain insight into herself, her family, and her friends. When she finally does, she's able to create small but positive changes in her relationships with them all. Characters are well drawn, especially Deanna, whose complicated, deeply felt emotions turn the story. There are plenty of heartbreaking moments, too, including a poignant confrontation with Tommy. Though nothing is miraculously fixed by the close, everyone's perspective has changed for the better. This is a thoughtful, well-executed debut from an author who understands how to write for teens. Krista Hutley
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Story of a Girl is a novel well worth reading for adults and mature young adults (I read it as an adult and can’t say how I would have reacted if I had read it as a teenager). Read morePublished 4 months ago by Laura Schuff
The Story of a Girl is an interesting story giving in-depth insight to the hardships and struggles of a low-class blue collar American family. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
Deanna Lambert has kinda a sh!tty life. She got caught having sex with Tommy Webber when she was 13 and he was 17 by her father - now, three years later, her life is still marred... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Crystal Starr Light
Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr surprised me by its sincere authenticity. At first when I started reading the book, I thought it may turn out to be too much teenage drama for me--... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Sarah Martin
Zarr’s debut novel truly deserves all the praise it’s received. The characters are realistic, the development of the story is interesting, and the theme of forgiveness is portrayed... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Tesia Tsai
This one was recommended by a friend who knows a lot about YA books. It’s very much a mood piece. Just a girl in a pizza shop trying to deal with events in the past, along with... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Maine Character
I enjoyed reading this. Did not really like the ending though. Great story about making mistakes and forgiveness. It seemed very real... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Michelle Bright
the ending is weird but I kinda liked it. so yeah why do I need so many words on this review????Published 11 months ago by Kindle Customer
im 13 an i love this book her and Tommy caught my eyes the way she d
said her dad caught them in the car and hhow jason was alwYs there idk this drama just got to me i felf... Read more