Author: Paige Harbison
Publisher: Harlequin Teen, 320 pages, January 31st 2012.
From: Bought from The Works bookstore
Add to: Goodreads
Synopsis: Welcome to Manderley Academy
I hadn't wanted to go, but my parents were so excited... So here I am, the new girl at Manderley, a true fish out of water. But mine's not the name on everyone's lips. Oh, no.
It's Becca Normandy they can't stop talking about. Perfect, beautiful Becca. She went missing at the end of last year, leaving a spot open at Manderley— the spot that I got. And everyone acts like it's my fault that infallible, beloved Becca is gone and has been replaced by not perfect, completely fallible, unknown Me.
Then, there's the name on my lips— Max Holloway. Becca's ex. The one boy I should avoid, but can't. Thing is, it seems like he wants me, too. But the memory of Becca is always between us. And as much as I'm starting to like it at Manderley, I can't help but think she's out there, somewhere, watching me take her place.
Waiting to take it back
Review: 4 stars - I had seen this book in work for a few weeks and kept picking it up and putting it back down. I decided to treat myself as an early Christmas present and I wasn’t disappointed.
First off, i’m going to mention the UK edition cover; it’s brilliant. The back cover especially is my favourite thing about this book. It’s like a notice board with raised pins and paperclips supporting the synopsis. They say never judge a book by its cover but it definitely swayed me in my decision to buy it.
The new girl’s dream as a youngster after reading Harry Potter was to go to a boarding school like Hogwarts. Her parents remembered her dream and years later managed to get her a place at Manderley Academy.
Sent away from the sunshine, beaches and friends of Florida; the new girl arrives in cold New Hampshire to a complete culture shock. Dressed in frayed jean shorts and flip flops she reluctantly hands over her phone; her lifeline to home and starts settles in to her new life at Manderley.
New Girl is told from two points of view and I didn’t once get confused. Sometimes with dual point of views I get confused easily, but New Girl is clearly written, each chapter labelled with who the point of view is from Becca or ‘Me’ (New Girl). Also, because each of the two main characters is very different in their personality, the chapters are easy to read.
I didn’t realise until I got to the end of the book that we hadn’t been told the New Girl’s name. I was a bit shocked when I realised this. I feel that this might have been done on purpose to engross the reader further and maybe ‘we’ the reader were the New Girl.
I’m new to reading contemporary YA, and so far i’m enjoying what I’ve read. New Girl had a bit of mystery in it too and I really enjoyed reading it.
I will say that there are sex references in this book, so it may not be suitable for all YA readers.