Book Review · YA · Young Adult

Book Review // If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo

81FwteebCtL-compressorIf I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo
Publisher: Usborne
Release Date: 1st June 2016
Buy: Paperback | Kindle
What They Say:

My name is Amanda. I’m 18. When you look at me, you might see that I’m pretty and popular; you might think my life is easy. But being me has never been easy. Because I haven’t always been Amanda. When I was born, I was named Andrew. Now, at my new school, I finally feel like myself. But do I owe my new friends the truth about my past?

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If I Was Your Girl is one of the most important books I’ll read in 2016. Because of the topic it covers, and while Amanda’s story is probably one of the more tamer trans stories, it’s still important, and it’s still something every teenager should read, so we can learn more about what trans people go through day after day. I’ve learnt more this year about being trans that I’ve known my whole life, and it will baffle me forever that people can’t just live the life they want to live, be the person they want to be, because other people are rude/ignorant/idiotic and it was kinda nice to see that Amanda’s transition wasn’t as horrific as it most probably is. We missed a lot of steps of Amanda’s transition – steps I was curious to read, if I’m honest. I want to know what it takes to transition, to learn more – what does it cost, what’s the emotional toll, there was mention of a fight which prompted Amanda leaving to live with her father, that I would have liked to see. So, yes, there were missed opportunities, but there was also a lot of good stuff in, informative stuff, that needs to be read by the masses.

The romance between Grant and Amanda was so sweet. In fact, it was all kinda perfect – Amanda and Grant’s romance, Amanda’s friendships with the girls, it all seemed to be going so well, that I ended up getting incredibly nervous. Because you can’t have a book like this, and not have some kind of reveal, it had to happen, and I could feel myself getting all antsy and wondering what would happen, and hoping it wouldn’t be as awful as I was imagining, and what shocked me most was who did the reveal. That really, really, really made me angry. Like punch a wall angry. I genuinely didn’t see it coming, actually, which made it worse, and I kinda wanted recriminations for everything that happened after, and I was kinda annoyed that there wasn’t anything, because the book just ended.

That’s my only gripe with If I Was Your Girl – the ending. I wanted more. It just ended. I literally turned the page and there were no more words and I was kind of distraught. Will there be a sequel? Was that it? It was really dissatisfying. Was it supposed to be like that? I just don’t know. It just left me with lots of questions. Apart from that, and that’s just my own personal opinion because I just love books tied up with neat bows, this book was outstanding. I really loved Amanda’s voice, she was so strong, brave, so confident in herself, she knew who she was, and that’s an amazing thing to have. This is such an important book, every single school in the world needs this book on their shelves, it will teach people so, so much.

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