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Good Girls

Review

Good Girls

How can one mistake earn honors student Audrey a reputation as a slut? In GOOD GIRLS, characters explore why some girls are so-called "good" and some are "bad" in the eyes of their peers, teachers and even their families.

Audrey has been hooking up with super hot Luke at parties throughout the fall. While he jokes with and teases her, she sees him talking to other girls as well. Nevertheless, they do have a great time making out in closets, rooms and outdoors. At school, though, Audrey ignores him because he's such a big flirt. She isn't ready to be another brokenhearted girl pining after him.

The hookup relationship is soon not enough for her. She resolves to break it off with him, but before doing so, she decides to have one more makeout session and to do something she's never done with him before. They get so carried away that they don't hear the door open or see the flash of the cell phone camera.

By Monday the picture is sent all over school --- and even to Audrey's parents! While faces cannot be seen, Audrey's beautiful blonde hair is spread out over Luke's legs, and there's no doubt who she is. Luke gets teased but is seen as a stud, while people whisper and point at Audrey. Audrey's father will not talk to her, while her mother wants to take her to a doctor.

School faculty members express their shock to Audrey and refer to the picture. Audrey becomes so upset that she hits a boy who will not stop talking to her about it. She finds that even local teens who work in shops make inappropriate comments to her about the infamous picture.

Her best friends, Ash and Joelle, are supportive at first. They ask what really happened with Luke during the fall, and learn all about the makeout sessions and how far Audrey actually went with him. Joelle still defends Audrey and vows to hurt the person who distributed the picture. Ash, on the other hand, changes her mind about Audrey, implying that Audrey is a slut just like school bad girls Pam and Cindy.

After a big argument Audrey befriends Pam and Cindy, and discovers that the reputations they've acquired are unfair and somewhat untrue. Soon, Ash and Joelle rejoin them; the girls make up and get ready to change the impressions of the school. They wage a campaign that ends with a fun Prom night surprise.

Not everything can be fixed, though, and Luke still seems to be mad at Audrey. What really happened between her and Luke? Audrey is forced to think about impressions and unfair judgments as she realizes that he's hurting too. Could she have been wrong about him?

How can one picture change the way people think about someone? A picture may be worth a thousand words, but in this case it tells nothing about the point of view of the two people involved. Because of a hasty hormone-fueled party decision, Audrey goes from honors student to bad girl, whereas Luke is somewhat of a hero. The person with the cell phone is only the first of those to blame for a series of damaging acts inflicted upon Audrey. There are those who forwarded the picture, those who treated her differently and those who made inappropriate remarks --- the entire situation snowballs.

There is more to everyone than mere labels of "hottie," "honors student," "slut" or even "good girl." Audrey's major hots for Luke and the way she acts on her feelings hurt no one but the two of them, yet everybody who sees the picture has an opinion of some sort. Author Laura Ruby is encouraging her audience to become informed first before judging others. GOOD GIRLS will get readers thinking and talking.

Reviewed by Amy Alessio on September 1, 2006

Good Girls
by Laura Ruby

  • Publication Date: September 1, 2006
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Hardcover: 274 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen
  • ISBN-10: 0060882239
  • ISBN-13: 9780060882235