The first time round I read Divergent in 2013, I devoured it. I loved it to bits. For most of my teen years I read contemporary fiction and to finally delve more into science fiction, specifically dystopian fiction, was exhilarating. Since then I’ve read more dystopian books, some of which impressed me more and some less. Also, this time round I tabbed the pages with post-it notes, annotated and cross-referenced. This close reading forced me to be more critical (in the analytical sense) as I read.
Going into books blind, particularly books like Vicious, can be infinitely thrilling. You enter unexplored land and everything is new. You don’t follow the tracks paved by expectations built upon the reading experiences of others. The cover states that it’s “a twisted tale of ambition, desire and superpowers”. It’s very correct in that description. That’s your starting point if you’re up for a thrill. If that’s you, then go on, pick up the book, read it and return to my review later to share your excitement. Now, if you’d rather know what you’re getting yourself into, read on.
There are so many reasons to hate Those Girls. Yet when I step away from the content and simply think about the structure of Those Girls as a novel, it actually holds up pretty well. This is why I think Lauren Saft has what it takes to become a successful author but I don’t have it in me to like this book much.