Girls like us by Randi Pink
Format: ARC provided by Fierce Reads
Top 3 Genres: Contemporary, Feminist, Young Adult
My rating: Set it on fire/ If you have nothing else to read/ you need to read it/Run and buy it.
To buy the book: CA • US • FR• Bookdep
Add to: Goodreads
Today it’s Halloween … but I don’t really celebrate so for me it’s kind of a regular day haha! And so time for a regular review of a not so regular book that came out at the beginning of this week: Girls like us! The stories of 4 teenage girls who got pregnant and have to deal with the repercussions. And how their lives will intertwine and create something beautiful!
Set in the summer of 1972, this moving YA historical novel is narrated by teen girls from different backgrounds with one thing in common: Each girl is dealing with pregnancy.
Four teenage girls. Four different stories. What they all have in common is that they’re dealing with unplanned pregnancies.
In rural Georgia, Izella is wise beyond her years, but burdened with the responsibility of her older sister, Ola, who has found out she’s pregnant. Their young neighbor, Missippi, is also pregnant, but doesn’t fully understand the extent of her predicament. When her father sends her to Chicago to give birth, she meets the final narrator, Susan, who is white and the daughter of an anti-choice senator.
How to survive when you are a teen, pregnant, and it’s the 70s
I don’t want to talk too much about this book, first because it is what it says it is: the story of 4 girls, 3 of them being black and the 4th a white girl from a very rich family. They all got pregnant (well one of them is the sister of one of the pregnant teens actually), some with their boyfriends, some being raped.Yup, this is not a nice and cute story all along. It portrays a more realistic version of how it is to be black, to be a teen, and to be pregnant. How you have to hide it away, how you are shamed and how sometimes you will think your only option is quite a dangerous one.
But in this story, what I will keep with me, is how women can help women. How all these girls, coming from different backgrounds (especially Sue being the white super privileged one and Missi being this back 14 years old from a small small town) will help and support each other, and become friends. Through little glimpses of their life, we get to know each of them and how they understand and deal with being pregnant. It was moving and innocent, and you could see how little girls were informed in the 70s. Not that it’s always different nowadays.
It was so easy to get attached to the characters and follow them, especially with the book being an own voice novel, the writer being a black woman and so making the experience of these black characters feels more realistic. I really could imagine myself being in a Southern state, among all of these girls!
I will not spoil the end, but it was beautiful and scary and full of hope at the same time!
In a few words
Do yourself a favor and read this beautiful book about feminism and women supporting women despite men trying to rule the world and how brave we can all be!
See you for a cup,