BOOK CLUB: These Girls

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Author: Sarah Pekkanen
ISBN: 978-07-318-1569-2
RRP: $29.99

Sarah Pekkanen introduces us to three young women living in New York in her new novel ‘These Girls’. These Girls seem to be very different but as we get to know them a little better, and peek into their lives through Pekkanen’s words, we realise that they aren’t so different after all. More to the point, they aren’t that different from any young woman trying to find their place in their world. They have their insecurities and past experiences they would be happier if no-one ever discovered.

These Girls are realistic and believable, and the novel tells a story that you have no problem believing – there is no point where you need to suspend disbelief to get you past it. Actually, maybe there is one because I’m not sure I can believe that last chapter would ever happen.

Centred around the high fashion world of glossy magazines in New York there is a lot of emphasis on appearances so it’s understandable that Renee feels she doesn’t fit as a size 12 in a size 4 world and this is something I can understand and empathise with. I can understand the draw of diet pills, I can feel the horror of having to put yourself out there only to be shot down and humiliated by nasty and inappropriate comments. There is no reason that a size 12 shouldn’t win the coveted position of Beauty Editor at Gloss magazine but if you’re insecure about your size to begin with it would feel like a major hurdle, and how do you talk about it when your friends are all, seemingly effortlessly, the size 4 you so covet?

these girls

Cate has just landed the position of Features Editor but there are times she can’t stop herself wondering why. She started at the bottom of the ladder as a receptionist and has worked her way up but there are things in her past that will always stop her truly believing that she deserves this.

Cate and Renee have been sharing an apartment for a while now and they have a pretty easy, casual relationship but it has never progressed to the real bond of friendship that both of these girls so desperately need.

Enter Abby, the sister of the GORGEOUS guy working at another magazine in their building. She arrives in the middle of a party looking less than together. Trey is worried about her and isn’t comfortable leaving her alone while he jets off for a story, enter Cate, Renee and their newly-spare room.

Preparing the room for Abby brings Cate and Renee together a little more and sets them on the path to friendship. Renee is outgoing and friendly but Cate isn’t one to open up easily so she appears aloof and unwilling to connect when really she just doesn’t know how to open up – yet.

These Girls follows three girls who have come to New York for very different reasons and from very different backgrounds. They grow together after the initial ice is broken and become more than room-mates and as they grow closer they begin to share more of their secrets, tell a little more of their backgrounds until we have the full picture and can see how they got to where they are. Better than that we get to watch this friendship form, grow and blossom until these three damaged women find that strength and support that a close friendship offers to face their issues and move on from them.

These Girls is the beautiful tale of a friendship that saves three young women from themselves and the mistakes of their pasts, three young women that could be any one of us. Pekkanen describes the beauty and importance of friendship in a way that is totally down-to-earth and easy to read. She’s definitely an author I will be keeping my eye out for, and it was nice to get a glimpse into the way the big glossy magazines work – something to aspire to.

40 of our Beauty Chick Chat members have been reading These Girls, find out what they thought below…

39 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: These Girls

  1. This book was brilliantly written. It is modern and up to date – it references facebook, twitter, etc. The story is gripping from page one and doesn’t let you down in any which way. A definate must read, recommended read!!

  2. A great read. These girls draw you into each of their lives – there is something about each of them that you can relate to, whether it be weight, striving to be better in any aspect of your life or even wanting the man that you know you can’t and should not have!

    I loved learning about their lives and their secrets and watching them get closer over time.
    Definitely recommend!

  3. I loved this novel from the start – the characters drew me in with their imperfections. I enjoyed following each story and felt for each of the girls as they struggled with their own issues. It was written in a straight forward style with enough information given about all the girls to empathise with them.
    I would have loved a longer story as it was wrapped up a little too quickly – or I’m hoping we get a sequel so I can find out what happens in Cate, Abby and Renne’s futures.

  4. I really enjoyed this book. A story of three young women living in New York. We get to see a wonderful female friendship they establish with each other . Two girls are wanting successful careers, and sometimes doubt themselves, the other has run away from a romance with a married man.
    A couple of little surprises at the end which I was not expecting. It was a good book. Thank you

  5. Loved this book. It’s slick and fast paced and gives a thoughtful insight to the lives of three women in New York and the life of a glossy magazine.

    It’s a seriously fun read – it’ll break your heart and make you laugh all in one… There are parts of the three women that each of us can relate to. It’s a great book to read with a glass of wine and your feet up – get your glam on and enjoy the pop cutlure references, the mental imagery of New York city and all that brings.

    Definitely recommended for anyone who likes a level of escapism with a dose of reality, for anyone who has ever dreamed of the bright Times Square lights and Jimmy Choos for a high powered office! 🙂


  6. I absolutely ADORED this book… I ended reading this in 2 sittings.. it was fantastic.
    It has a very urban/edgie feel.. great imagery and an author that has great skills for making you feel part of their story.

    Loved and would totally recommend~!

  7. I really liked this book as the author has connected the lives of 4 different women beautifully. It’s a very interesting book because all the characters in this book looks very real and you feel like they are one of you.
    The book is written in very simple style and is very easy to understand, it was like watching a movie because I could literally see all the characters alive in front of me. I was really sad when I finished reading this book as I wanted to keep reading it.
    I definitely recommend this book to all my friends out there, its a must read… 🙂

  8. I have just reliased that my review never posted… so lets see how I go rewritting it.
    I was one of the very lucky people that got to read this book. I am not the best book reader and usually takes me a LONG time to read a book. However I was sucked into this book pretty quickly. I found it easy to read and get into. It was a good tear jeker. I had a tissue handy at all times- I am a big sook tho. I was very impressed of the references to twitter and facebook and I must say I have since attempted to jump on the twitter banwagon.
    As I said I am not very good at review things but I would defiently recommend this to my friends as an easy read with a young Sex and City feeling to it.
    Good read thanks guys

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