Title: The Female of the Species
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Published: September 2016
Genre: Contemporary, Thriller, YA.
Goodreads rating: 4.27
Edgar Award–winning author Mindy McGinnis delivers a dark and riveting contemporary YA novel that blends the unflinching honesty of Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak with the relentless pacing and alternating perspectives of Gone Girl. A stunning, unforgettable page-turner.
Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it.
Three years ago, when her older sister, Anna, was murdered and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best—the language of violence. While her own crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people. Not with Jack, the star athlete who wants to really know her but still feels guilty over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered. And not with Peekay, the preacher’s kid with a defiant streak who befriends Alex while they volunteer at an animal shelter. Not anyone.
As their senior year unfolds, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting these three teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.
My Rating and General Opinion
This was more than a great read! Hard, raw and emotional at times but it did help put things in perspective!! I really think although it is a YA it is a must even for adults!
Certainly it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting especially seeing that cover, that didn’t prepare me for what it was to come…
The writing was off the charts! This was my first contact with Mindy’s writing but I’ve only heard good things about her, and now I can understand why. I don’t know what or how she did it but this story immediately kept you gripped, it was an emotional book and the writing only increased that feeling. All and all a must.
Raw, intelligent, brutal and so realistic. Those words help describe what this book was all about although it doesn’t stop there.
This book is a new look inside of a certainly disturbed but coherent mind and couldn’t be more appropriate for the world we live in now even if it tried! .
The story narrates the goings of Alex, a teenager who lost her sister three years ago to the hands of a killer that ended up free. With that premise, we follow Alex in high school and basically that would be the plot, slim but so damn rich! After all Alex went through she is not a sociable creature, she sticks to what she knows, but one day with the appearance first of Jack (another high school senior) things start to change and she starts to open up and make friends. Alex is troubled, not only by what happened to her sister but also by her father leaving (with him what could have been her only hope to learn to cope that rage and violence that lives inside of her) and her absent mother. Alex has no one or so she thinks until this story happens. After all this is nothing but a trip into Alex’s mind, a trip into a functional killer as she more than once refers to herself if I’m correct. .
I could leave it on that but just a warning, prepare yourselves because the story doesn’t end there and the ending… left me completely speechless. In hindsight you could say it was karma and that would be correct but still I didn’t like it one bit.
Questions not answered her, should be taken the justice by our hands or let the supposed existent “justice system” take care of it?? Aren’t you sick of seeing how nothing in the world changes for good?? There are changes, but it looks that every change of those is for worse. And are those violent, enraging problems genetic?? No, I don’t think so, it might be a factor that cannot help but I think in the nurture vs nature debate, nurture takes more weight.
Of the three main characters that we encounter in this story certainly the most striking is Alex. We have a story and three minds that take part in it, in different degrees: the “disturbed, methodical and controlling” eyes (Alex), then the “comforting but blind” eyes (Peekay) and finally “know-it-all see-it-all moral” eyes (Jack).
Alex is such a peculiar, real, strong and lovable character that I completely fell into her story. I felt compassion for her and was sad she had to go through all of it, also envied her strength to put things above her (although the ways she used to get things done was drastic) but most of all, which is scary, I felt some kind of symbiosis between her and me. I understood her and felt sympathy for her even when what she was saying or doing didn’t constitute a “normal/correct” approach.
Peekay, aka PK aka Preacher’s Kid, didn’t turn out to be the character I had in mind when first discovered. She is a normal girl and one of those friends that if you meet early in life you can count yourself as a fortunate being. She is generous, complacent but also patient and I think is the best thing that happened to Alex.
And then we’ve got Jack, maybe the love interest yes, but not only that. Jack serves as the character who besides PK helps Alex to open up, but then also works as the moral compass in this story. Through he’s eyes we get away from the bubble that is “Alex’s brain” and get to see things through a moral and more realistic and frightening perspective.
The rest of the entourage that appears in this story certainly had their times and there were some notable surprises among the typical high school type of kinds.
Not doubt this is a recommendable read, it was my first McGinnis book and it won’t be the last, this author has already left an impression!