Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
Story of a Girl Hardcover – January 10, 2007
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
From School Library Journal
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
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
*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
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
Sara Zarr's moving "Story of a Girl" tells just this tale from the point of view of sixteen-year-old Deanna Lambert. At age 13, Deanna was caught "in the act" with her older brother's best friend. By her father. Oh, and Deanna and the boy were in a parked car.
Small towns being what they are, it takes only a day for Deanna's story to spread throughout Pacifica. From that moment on Deanna is the "school sl*t" (despite the fact she's avoided boys since the incident) and at home life isn't much better. Dad--nearly three years later--has yet to recover from finding his daughter in a car with a seventeen-year-old boy and he barely talks to Deanna.
"Story of a Girl" opens on the final day of Deanna's sophomore year. She's feeling stuck--in her small town, in her reputation, and in her family. Zarr does a great job in showing the depression--economic and emotional--of a place down on its luck. Deanna's only job option is a rundown pizza joint. Her parents professional lives have been downsized--Mom working in a Mervyns and Dad in an auto parts supply store. Deanna's much-loved older brother lives in the basement with his new wife and baby. Deanna's brother and his wife work in the grocery store. With everyone working retail hours, no one is home at the same time and the house is sliding into disrepair.
Deanna dreams of escape--of saving her money and moving out with her brother and his family. But escape is hard to come by when you are sixteen and live in a small town. Instead, Deanna must come to terms with what happened and forgive herself and others. Over the course of just this one summer, Deanna, with a few mistakes along the way, finds peace with herself, her reputation, her town, and her family. It's a beautiful gem of a book, one that will stay with me forever.
I bought this book long ago, after having the opportunity to meet Sara Zarr. At the time, I was more interested in meeting Melissa Marr, Kelley Armstrong, and Beth Revis, so I didn't stop to chat or have her sign a book. I'll admit, I felt guilty, so I went back and bought her signed debut copy of "Story of a Girl".
Lately, I've been really weeding through my books, and I just on a whim picked this up, ready to get it off the shelves. Well, the results were quite different from what I expected - Zarr is a highly talented writer with a superb story that I think many girls from many walks of life will admire.
The essence of the story is forgiveness and realizing that if you aren't happy with yourself, it doesn't matter where you run, you will still be unhappy. But just writing that out totally doesn't do justice to the story.
It's realizing that everyone has his or her own sh!t. That when you say mean things to another person, yes, I'm sorry your life is awful, but that other person still didn't deserve it. It's owning up to your mistakes, being the adult in a situation and saying, "I messed up. I was wrong. I'm sorry." It's about changing your life by facing your problems.
To get sappy, it's about changing the world by being the change.
Each character, from our protagonist, Deanna, to horrible Tommy, who while he didn't rape her in the "violent" usage of the word, did pressure her until she said yes, got to have a say, got to have nuance. This is a group of just normal people, living mediocre lives and just figuring out how to deal with it.
Which is probably why I LOVED the conclusion. I thought it was spot on. With the way Deanna's family was, I'd be surprised at a more cataclysmic conclusion - and while I'd love for Deanna's dad to just outright stop being a d!ck, the fact is, it's obvious by the end of the book that he's changing. (Plus, I couldn't help but see the obvious signs of depression.)
In short, this was a fantastic book that I would definitely recommend to teens. Zarr proved herself a competent writer - I've really been waning on my reading of young adult and Zarr proved that there are young adult writers who aren't writing sappy romances or generic dystopias and cancer books. I'm still timid about reading more of her works, just because I'm moving away from the young adult genre, but if you do like YA contemporary books, you should enjoy this.
Mild. I don't recall any or many f-bombs.
Tommy and Deanna's relationship is never described in graphic terms and mostly from a flashback POV.
A boy grabs Deanna, and she pushes him back. Security is called.
Brought to you by:
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the second book in a row I've read that features a heroine in love with...Read more