REVIEW: The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis

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*Beware: Very shitty review because life happens sometimes

Title: The Female of the Species

Author: Mindy McGinnis

Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books

ISBN: 9780062320896

Rating: 2/5

Synopsis: “Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it. When her older sister, Anna, was murdered three years ago and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best. The language of violence.

While her crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people, even in her small hometown. She relegates herself to the shadows, a girl who goes unseen in plain sight, unremarkable in the high school hallways.

But Jack Fisher sees her. He’s the guy all other guys want to be: the star athlete gunning for valedictorian with the prom queen on his arm. Guilt over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered hasn’t let him forget Alex over the years, and now her green eyes amid a constellation of freckles have his attention. He doesn’t want to only see Alex Craft; he wants to know her.

So does Peekay, the preacher’s kid, a girl whose identity is entangled with her dad’s job, though that does not stop her from knowing the taste of beer or missing the touch of her ex-boyfriend. When Peekay and Alex start working together at the animal shelter, a friendship forms and Alex’s protective nature extends to more than just the dogs and cats they care for.

Circumstances bring Alex, Jack, and Peekay together as their senior year unfolds. While partying one night, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting the teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.”

I don’t really have anything to say about this book, mainly because of the fact that it has been about 2 weeks since I finished it and therefore don’t remember anything. If you asked me what I’ve been doing for those 2 weeks, I’d probably say juggling my time between caring for my currently non-existent mental health, IB and SAT.

I thought The Female of the Species had great potential. I read the synopsis and I was deeply intrigued. This is probably why I had to take it up to the first place of my wanted books list.

I don’t think the book was that bad, it just wasn’t that great either. It had an okay storyline and characters (except one), the only thing that I liked -above average- is the theme of rape and rape culture. It is true that rape is not something that can be treated superficially, even if it doesn’t happen to your or someone close to you because it still can happen to you, whether you like it or not. It is not okay to defend someone who may be guilty from rape or a similar activity just because they are your friend (and I strongly advise you to change your friends).

“But boys will be boys, our favorite phrase that excuses so many things, while the only thing we have for the opposite gender is women, said with disdain and punctuated with an eye roll.”

(this must be one of my all-time favorite quotes)

One thing that I remember not liking is Jack as a character. He was the epitome of a sex-crazed hormonal teenager, whining about how he is a boy and he has his needs. It was utterly disturbing and annoying for me to read about his oh-so-deep thoughts and conversations.

What made the book unpleasant is how I wasn’t able to connect with any of the characters (especially Jack, for the reasons I’ve stated above) I found the main character, Alex, extremely incomprehensible and unnecessary, at times. Sure, I can understand why she feels the way she feels but I didn’t think it was a good reason alone to act as a motive behind her actions.

All in all, The Female of the Species is a book with a lot of potential but characters that are hard to relate to. Because of this I found it hard to fully immerse myself into the book but if you think it won’t create as big of a problem for you, go for it. I know many people who thought the book’s view on rape culture was great enough to give it 3+ stars.

Where to Buy: Amazon // Book Depository

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