You ever just get in the mood for a book that you know will depress you? One that will reach into you and maybe smack your emotions around a little bit? I think you do. I think we all do. I read Pretty Girl-13 by Liz Coley in what might as well have been a single sitting. I was sent home from work because I was that gross nauseous kind of sick, and also just really dizzy and out of it. Y’all, I was experiencing misery and you know, misery loves company and all. SO, I totally trotted out Pretty Girl-13 because it was TIME. I have had this book in my pile for months on end just waiting for the perfect moment. Dragging the book into the bathtub and into bed and into the living room, I really gobbled up Pretty Girl-13 and have to say that if you are into books that are depressing as all get out, YOU WILL LOVE THIS BOOK. I hope.
The beginning of Pretty Girl-13 by Liz Coley is mad eerie. Basically, Angie, the main character is 13 and out on a Girl Scout camping trip. She has to go to the bathroom, so instead of waking someone up to go with her, she just goes alone into the woods. She hears a noise, investigates it, and is kidnapped. The book then picks up about three years later and Angie is dropped off at her home with zero memory of the three years she was in captivity. She basically has repressed her trauma. So, she shows up and naturally her parents are shocked as hell. Her dad has quite the reaction. She also begins going to school again and oh yeah, she tries to hang out with her old friends but it just doesn’t work. OH and also, the press is about to get all up in her business. AND ALSO, Angie starts seeing a psychologist and well, we basically go through what has happened to Angie as different personalities come out. THERE ARE REVELATIONS YOU GUYS. REVELATIONS! Sorry, I just get excited about big plot twists.
While I did not relate to Angie at all and honestly felt pity for her, I did find her narrative to be intense and engaging. You guys, I literally did not put this book down, not even to draw my bath. That is how much of a grip it had on me. I just thought Angie was interesting because she has been through something big and scary and she is doing her best to adjust to life after. It’s been awhile since I read the book so I can’t quite wax poetic to you guys about her personality because I don’t really remember much of it. I think that regular Angie has been through hell, but is a fighter and you know, thank goodness she survived. If you read this, you’ll see the full extent of what she survived.
I am not entirely sure what it is called but Angie definitely has a mental break that happens as a result of her being kidnapped and you know raped and beaten on a regular basis. I think it’s called dissociative identity disorder but I could be wrong. Anyways, Pretty Girl-13 features these different personalities that Angie has inside her that come out when she is going through something awful. They also come out when she is under I think hypnosis at her therapy. It is through those different personalities that she recounts what happened to her. It is chilling and whoa, gives me goosebumps just thinking about it. I liked seeing the different personalities and thought it added a unique dimension to the book. It sort of reminded me of this movie we watched in high school psychology class called The Three Faces Of Eve, I think. Anyways.
Liz Coley certainly has written a total page turner. I will admit that there are moments where it feels more like one of those Lifetime movies than something I should take seriously — but honestly? There are those days where you just need something morbid with all these twists and with all kinds of emotions. Pretty Girl-13 got me through a day of illness and so because of that it will hold a special place in my heart.
Disclosure: Review Copy Provided By Publisher