Title: Pretty Girl-13
Author: Liz Coley
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication Date: March 19, 2013
Reminiscent of the Elizabeth Smart case, Pretty Girl-13 is a disturbing and powerful psychological mystery about a girl who must piece together the story of her kidnapping and captivity.
Angie Chapman was thirteen years old when she ventured into the woods alone on a Girl Scouts camping trip. Now she’s returned home…only to find that it’s three years later and she’s sixteen-or at least that’s what everyone tells her.
What happened to the past three years of her life?
Angie doesn’t know.
But there are people who do — people who could tell Angie every detail of her forgotten time, if only they weren’t locked inside her mind. With a tremendous amount of courage, Angie embarks on a journey to discover the fragments of her personality, otherwise known as her “alters.” As she unearths more and more about her past, she discovers a terrifying secret and must decide: When you remember things you wish you could forget, do you destroy the parts of yourself that are responsible?
Holy Jesus and all the little cherubs what the hey did I just read?! This book is so wonderfully wacky in all the right ways, and I’m still reeling from its awesomeness. This book has left me creeped out, disturbed, and awed by Liz Coley’s immense talent.
I honestly meant to go to sleep at a decent hour the night I started reading this, but when I started Pretty Girl-13, I just couldn’t stop and read it in one sitting. This book is gripping, suspenseful, and emotional. It will have you crying and laughing and swearing (I was doing that last one in my head throughout basically the entire thing). It will make you want to leave the light on when you go to sleep because Coley does such a good job at creating a disturbingly believable story. I can understand why some readers may not find Coley’s story believable, but after doing a paper on Dissociative Identity Disorder, I can tell you it’s actually pretty realistic.
Even though at times Pretty Girl-13 is extremely upsetting, it will captivate you from the first page and make you want more when it’s over. This book gave me so many feels it was unbelievable. Some of the emotional punches are painful and hard to take, but it’s completely worth your while to battle through and read the whole book. I haven’t read such an emotional book in a while, and I know it will haunt me for a long time.
I hereby order you to drop what you’re doing and read Pretty Girl-13. It’s beautiful and strange and achingly raw, but hopeful at the same time. Liz Coley, you have made it to the top of my favorite author list. I can’t wait to be wowed again by your work soon (*hint hint*).