Brilliantly Done

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It is the mid 1960’s when social economic status played an important role in the lives of teens growing up in an era of unrest. Among those teens are a group of girls from the rough side of town whose reputations preceded them; and not in a good way. They are known as the bad girls.

Evie, Connie, Sunny, and Juanita don’t live in a posh neighborhood and don’t attend the best high school. Instead, they are relegated to a less than stellar high school who provided more of a babysitting service rather than an education.

On a fateful night out on the town, Evie is assaulted by one of the better neighborhood and well-to-do boys, Preston. As Evie struggles to fend off her assailant, she ultimately succumbs to the assault and blacks out. Evie then wakes up only to discover that Preston is dead — stabbed to death by one of the rich girls, Diane.

What follows is the unlikely friendship between Diane and Evie. And how Diane forms a camaraderie with the bad girls in a time where Diane would be shunned and/or ostracized by either side of the tracks.

While I have to admit that although I was intrigued by an excerpt, and the premise of The Outsiders retelling, I wasn’t convinced that I would enjoy the novel. Was I ever wrong! I loved that the story is told from Evie’s perspective as Evie isn’t as jaded like the others in her circle. Evie still has a moral compass and isn’t swayed easily into the bad girl syndrome. Diane is an innocent, but wise. I truly appreciated Diane’s empathy, especially since she was considered an outcast in her own societal circle.

The plot moves slowly at the beginning as it is done purposely to set up the scenarios that are about to unfold. Brilliantly done, it sets up the reader for a heartfelt conclusion.

Would I read more from this author? Absolutely! I love Mathieu’s writing style and Bad Girls Never Say Die is one of those books that you should take the time to read without expectation and without any preconcieved notions. Five outstanding stars.

I received a finished copy of the book from Roaming Book Press through the Bookish First Raffle. The review herein is completely my own and contains my honest thoughts and opinions.