Cover Image: My Sweet Girl

My Sweet Girl

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Member Reviews

Such a unique and addicting story that was equal parts dark, sinister and heartbreaking. And what an amazing debut. I will absolutely be reading anything this author puts out!
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Paloma was adopted from an orphanage in Sri Lanka at 12 years old, moving to the Bay Area with her parents, hoping to leave the ghosts of her past behind. But after 18 years, a secret caught up with her and when her roommate threatened to expose it, she frantically tries to figure out what to do. But when she returns to negotiate with him, she finds his dead body. As she flees the apartment and the police are called, she returns to the apartment with them the next day, only to find him and all traces of a crime gone. Spooked beyond belief she goes to her parents’ house whole they’re out of town, only to be confronted with more strange occurrences. It seems like her strange and haunted past may have finally caught up with her halfway across the world.

After reading Amanda Jayatissa’s newer novel You’re Invited and owing it, I realized I had this one in my TBR pile and decided to jump in - and I’m so glad I did! This one was just absolutely fabulous! I was so blown away by all the twists and turns in the plot and actually really creeped out by the legend of Mohini, the ghost that haunts the pages of the book. It really creates a great atmosphere.

Once again, the author create characters that are deeply flawed and even unlikable in a way, but you feel for them as well, because they aren’t perfect, and they aren’t trying to hide that fact either. Paloma has major flaws, and in way, as a reader, I was rooting for her to get it together somehow. Her and the other characters were well drawn and multilayered, not flat and static at all.

Oh and that ending. Ohhhh boy. Loved it. Can’t say too much, but wow. Bravo.

Anyway, Amanda Jayatissa has officially made it onto my automatically purchase list. She’s proven to be a great writer who can weave complex, twisty plots with great characters and incredible atmospheric scenes. Pick this one up if you’re looking for a great thriller!
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My Sweet Girl is a phenomenally unpredictable thriller from start to finish. Filled to the brim with twists and a captivating plot, this one is sure to keep readers hooked. The characters are well-developed. The story is incredibly fast-paced. This is one not to be missed! Highly recommended! Be sure to check out My Sweet Girl asap.
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I tried to get into this one so much so that I switched to an audio and that made me dislike it even more. I don't know if it was just being dumped into the story, the fact that I already disliked the main character or the amount of cursing in the first 30 minutes of the audio. I pulled over on my drive home to change audio books...
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My Sweet Girl was my favorite book of 2021. I purchased a copy for both my library branches and gave everyone in my family a copy of the book for Christmas. The prose was moving and musical. Jayatissa really captured  the emotional state of the main character and kept the reader guessing to the very end.
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Absolutely one of my favorite thrillers of the last few years. This is my go-to recommendation for folks who say they can always tell what the twist will be. I never saw this one coming and it made me want to start all over from page 1.
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“My Sweet Girl” by Amanda Jayatissa follows Paloma, after she is adopted from her Sri Lankan orphanage. Once in America, Paloma grows used to a life of luxury, so at age thirty when she is suddenly cut off from her parents’ money she opts to get a roommate, Arun. Except Arun discovers a secret of Paloma’s and before she can do anything about it, he ends up dead. Now, with no evidence that Arun ever existed, Paloma must figure out if her secret is safe OR if she’s dealing with someone even worse than Arun.

This book really kept me on my toes. Paloma’s character is on medication and drinking heavily, so it’s hard to know what’s real and what isn’t real. Arun exists and then he doesn’t. She loves her parents next door neighbor and then she finds her completely irritating. Back and forth her mental state rocks.

The last few chapters were captivating. When Jayatissa makes her grand reveal of what Paloma’s secret is, everything falls into place and little hints that seemed off to me suddenly made sense. I had inklings of what was coming, but never enough to be certain.

Overall, this book was a great ride. Paloma is a complex character who is interesting to watch, especially when we can see her past and her present colliding. In the end, I gave this book a solid 4 stars.

Thanks to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for an ARC in exchange for my honest review!
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This was an interesting one - kept me guessing but I wasn't enthralled. But it did get me thinking - I would read more from this author.
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Oh my! The twists and turns. I couldn't figure out what was up from down and I didn't want to. I was engaged and completely gripped to my seat. I could not put MY SWEET GIRL down. This is getting my highest praise. What a debut!
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My Sweet Girl is a story that focuses on main character, Paloma. Paloma is a girl who ends up in an orphanage after her mother gives her up in Sri Lanka. As Paloma gets dangerously close to being of age to be transferred to another place for girls she is graciously adopted by an American couple.

However, as time proceeds on and Paloma is an adult things are not as lovely as she would hope. Her life isn't what she expected especially when a roommate discovers a dark secret of Paloma's from the orphanage and the said roommate, Arun, ends up dead. 

Upon his death, Paloma does whatever she can to escape her past. One thing she cannot escape her memories or the ghost story of Mohini which she is starting to believe is real and has followed her to America. The story twists and turns as Paloma goes deeper into her terror that her past has returned. My Sweet Girl jumps back and forth from past and present. Paloma's secret is really far more dark than any reader would anticipate. 

No one said Paloma was a good girl, and as her past comes crashing into her present Paloma is determined to survive by any means necessary even if it means someone else has to die...

All together this book was an enjoyable read that kept my attention. I struggled with the book towards the end, not because it wasn't enjoyable, but the loose ends were just tied together sloppily. Paloma's dark secret is exposed in a way that seems more thrown together than fleshed out. The twist that ties Paloma and her childhood friend together seems almost forced. Honestly once I got to that point in the book I was pretty much the cartoon epitome of 'huh?' and absolute confusion. The dark secret revelation seemed to stunt the otherwise smooth flow of the story and the ending more confusing than resolving. 

Regardless it was a pleasant read with some choppy explanations and stunted conclusions that I still had no trouble with. Would I recommend it? Maybe, but honestly the book seemed to be lacking an experienced touch when it comes to the skill of the suspense and thriller writers. Still I am grateful for the opportunity to review, My Sweet Girl. Until next time, Happy Reading!
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Thank you to the publisher for giving me a chance to review a digital copy of this book. I was excited to read this one, because the premise sounded interesting, but unfortunately, this one fell flat for me. We have two timelines going throughout this story- one that takes place in Sri Lanka- the past- and one that takes place in The United States-the present. The main character of this story is Paloma, who used to live at an orphanage for young girls, but was eventually adopted by an American couple and moved to The United States. Apparently she is hiding a secret, and when we roommate comes up missing, her past will catch up to her. I thought this book was trying to hard to be too many things. Not only do you have the dual timelines so you're constantly going back and forth, but there's also some kind of paranormal aspect to the story. There are quite a few other characters, and they each have their own tragic storyline. This added a lot of unnecessary information to Paloma's story, and there were times that the story seemed to drag on. About halfway through, I considered quitting, but I decided to push through. When the twist is finally revealed, I can't say that I was all that surprised. One of the reasons that I have kind of stopped reading thrillers so much lately is because so many of them have the same basic storyline- an unreliable female narrator that takes medicine for some kind of mental disorder, and often drinks with her meds, which causes her to black out and hallucinate, so when she comes to, she is never sure what is real and what isn't. This storyline was interesting enough the first dozen times I read it, but after awhile, it just gets old.
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If the synopsis there has captured your interest, my advice would be to stop reading reviews and head into this book blind!

My Sweet Girl is the first book I’ve read that takes place in Sri Lanka, at least in my recent memory. I loved the scenes at the orphanage and learning about Paloma’s history through the flashbacks. I enjoyed the scenes set in the past a lot more than the present!

The present-day chapters felt a little disjointed, probably on purpose due to Paloma’s drinking. The reader can’t really tell if she’s an unreliable narrator or not, and I wasn’t sure where the main plot was headed. Paranormal themes aren’t my favorite, so I hoped Paloma was just hallucinating during the Mohini scenes!

I would DEFINITELY recommend listening to the audiobook of My Sweet Girl. The narrator’s accent was extremely pleasant to listen to, and it definitely added to the story.

Although I was able to guess the “big” twist right off the bat, there were plenty of other small twists to keep me on my toes.

Overall, this was an interesting, unique debut. I am certainly interested in reading future novels by this author.
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Paloma was adopted from an orphanage in Sri Lanka and catapulted into a dream existence in California. She has the life all children dream of, the perfect parents, the best schools and money in her pocket. Fast forward a few years and Paloma finds her herself penniless, friendless and estranged from her parents. The only person that offers a glimmer of respite is Arun, the Indian man Paloma takes in as a lodger. That is until Arun discovers Paloma’s dark secret, one that threatens everything in Paloma’s fragile existence. The next day Paloma finds Arun dead! She run’s but by the time the police are on the scene, there’s no sign of Arun’s body. Is Paloma’s secret about to be uncovered and is she now in more danger than ever before?

I was expecting a thriller and this book delivered but what I wasn’t expecting quite so much was the creepiness. It very much felt like a ghost story/murder mystery/family saga, which made for a wonderful mix. The narration in this story is what really makes it special though, there is something untrustworthy yet strangely compelling about it. The twists and turns are surprising and satisfying and Paloma as a character is sassy and volatile but has you routing for her, yet you’re not really sure why. Jayatissa has written an intricately woven tale than spans time and place that delivers full force from the first pages. A reminder to us all that you can’t outrun your past. My Sweet Girl is out now and definitely is deserving of your time.
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Great read. Couldn’t put the book down kept me on the edge. I enjoyed the plot and character development.
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What an excellent debut thriller! The twist at the end was fantastic (and I must say, I love a good unreliable narrator). This one was super twisty and fun while also touching on some important social themes. Very curious to read more from Jayatissa in the future!
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📚 BOOK / REVIEW 📚

Coming into the New Year like it's hot! I am so glad I stopped by @northlandlibrary to grab a copy of #mysweetgirl by @amandajayatissa, which has been a book on my radar for MONTHS. I really enjoyed this one and I love that she is a #debut author! My anxiety was on full tilt from page one with this book and I found myself unable to put this down! You'll zip through this one ... I really adored the cultural references and the uniqueness of the plot. A definite recommendation from me! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
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I enjoyed this one very much. The cultural aspects were very fascinating. I know nothing about Sri Lanka, and I enjoyed immersing myself in the cultural lore. The characters were interesting, and the back and forth between timelines was done very well, as well as the pacing of the story. I enjoyed this book by Amanda Jayatissa, and hope the she continues writing more.
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I recently read a super creepy, dare I say gothic novel, that I have been processing and holding off on my review to try and put it into words. It is the story of Paloma, a woman living in San Francisco, haunted by a spirit/ghost/monster from her childhood in an orphanage in Sri Lanka, only to have those close to her and who know her secrets be murdered or disappear. Paloma starts to go off the rails as she cannot differentiate between what is real and what is in her head. Creepy creepy creepy. And yet, so twisted and suspenseful that I could not put this book down. It went in so many directions that I did not see coming and left me gasping. The scenes that were flashbacks to Sri Lanka were fascinating and so descriptive that they fully enhanced the gothic vibes. I don’t think I have ever read anything like this and full disclosure, it gave me messed up dreams.
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Thank you Netgalley for this ARC of My Sweet Girl. What a great debut, the cover first grabbed my attention, then the story sucked me in. Paloma, adopted from Sri Lanka has been raised with the best of everything. As life moves on, Paloma is eventually cut off from her parent's funding and must make it on her own. She decides to rent out a room in her apartment. When Arun moves in, she feels not only is she helping herself, but she is also helping someone else out. What seems to be a win-win, is, until it isn't. Arun discovers a secret of Paloma that has the potential to ruin everything. This book has several twists that kept me interested and turning the pages. Thrillers aren't my favorite because I find them a bit too formulaic, but this was good, especially for a debut.
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I very much enjoyed this thriller. It’s what I look for in a thriller which is twits and turns and surprises. 

I liked the dual timeline and the supernatural element. 

This one you can’t just casually read or you will miss important details and plot points.

I like the fact that I didn’t overly like the main character.

I’m also beyond impressed that this is a debut author!!
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