Cover Image: Girls Who Lie Together

Girls Who Lie Together

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Overall, it was a fun read filled with some good ole fashion teenage angst. I'd recommend it to all my friends
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Two girls end up at a work program in New Orleans.  Ren is there because she stole and wrecked her step dad's sports car and Britt is there because she is the niece of the person who runs the program.  These two couldn't be more different, but it is that which draws them to each other.  What appears to be love blooming quickly dies, because Britt leaves suddenly leaving Ren wondering what happened.
When Ren goes home, she learns that they are moving due to her step father's political aspirations.  She is not happy about the news, but cannot do anything about it.  When they move, her step father gets her a beat up Camaro, which is thrilled about.  When she arrives at school, she learns that many of the students come from money.  She also learns that the popular girl at school is none other than Britt on the arm of her equally popular boyfriend.  
Britt is terrified that Ren will out her and she pleads with her not to do so.  Ren assures her that she will not.  
As the two young women see each other day in and day out, Britt is drawn to Ren.  Going so far as to ask her to come to her house.  
It is a very realistic view of teenage young love and dealing with homophobia in high school.
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The characters were written in an unlikable way. It was hard to root for them and found a lack of chemistry between the love interests.
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I received an ebook copy of Girls Who Lie Together by Jessa Russo from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Although I was hoping to really enjoy this book, the characters and plot fell flat at times. Additionally, some of the plot points seemed a bit tone deaf to the current times. This led to it taking ages to finish the book and really, I did not love any of the characters, they seemed very one dimensional overall.
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Thank you so much to NetGalley and Victory Editing NetGalley Co-Op for letting me read this one in exchange for an honest review.

Here we have a YA book with romance and a theme of LBGTQI+ with FF. 
I would say one of the tropes is frenemies to lovers turning to enemies to lovers again so there is a back and forth relationship. Another trope is that it includes both first time and first love.

The story is from 1 POV but I would have liked to read it from Brits POV too.

Girls Who Lie Together was easy to getting in to especially after reading following in the beginning "He calls the girls his girls. Is it endearing, like, because he cares about them or ... creepy? Wasn't there a movie about a dude collecting girls like they were his dolls or something?". I mean who wouldn't continue reading after this right?

The language is easy and the story is in two parts. 
The timeline between part one and two was good and I really enjoyed it.
In part two I found a sentence I really liked, especially since I liked the movie Mean Girls,; "They make Regina George look like a freaking angel."  And honest to God they really did.

If you like Mean Girls and other movies or books like that and books with LBGTQI theme this might actually be a book for you.

I give this book ⭐⭐⭐, 5 out of 5 because I really liked it but felt like something was missing for it to be a 4 or even 5 star read.

Oh and by the way I really liked the cover 😍.
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In  this “Means Girls” meets “Grease” romance, Ren Carpenter’s paying the price for joyriding her step-dad’s classic car. As penance she’s spending time at L’Andreaux’s Home for Wayward Girls. It’s not as grim as it sounds 😅 but there she meets the beautiful but aloof Brit, who’s got a few secrets of her own. 👀

I wasn’t in the mood to read a YA romance but when I cracked this open to read a few pages, Russo’s writing just yanked me into this world and I couldn’t stop.
It starts out as a classic enemies to friends to lovers romance. There’s a lot of wicked and sarcastic banter, pining and not ready to admit feelings all told from Ren’s POV which was a lot of fun to read. I loved Ren’s character growth in this book and the fact it was all told from her POV really emphasized how her thought process changed as she goes through the sum of her experiences. 

I couldn’t wait for the second part of this book to begin because it brought the reckoning!! 😬 Everything about the second part was great, however I have to admit it was painful reading the homophobia bits and the secrecy over the relationship between Ren and Brit. As a story arc it worked well, but it didn’t make it any easier to not get mad about it. 

I thought the end worked out interestingly too. For those worried - it’s an HEA, but done in a really good way that befitted the plot of the story. A really great YA with loads of emotion packed in - not to be missed.

Thank you NetGalley for an Arc in an exchange for an honest review.
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An enemies to lovers type romance, at first glance, for the :LGBTQ crowd.

The first half of this book deals with our main character Ren (who is from Texas) going to a farm in Louisiana for the summer to work as her punishment for stealing her stepdad's classic car and crashing it.  She isn't too happy to go and then she meets Brit, the beautiful but mean girl who is the niece of the owner.  They hit it off and have some long, drawn out sex scenes before Ren leaves to go back home.

In the second half of the book, Ren is heartbroken after leaving her summer love and her parents move to a very small town elsewhere in Texas.  When she starts school at her new preppy academy, who does she see? Brit. It's just like the opening minutes of Grease when Sandy and Danny first see each other.  But then we meet "school Brit" who is the head cheerleader and resident mean girl, and who has been dating the football captain for the last four years.  

And then it just goes from bad to worse.  No matter how horrible Brit is to Ren, Ren keeps coming back for more, like a lovesick puppy.  And this toxic relationship, which should definitely be a warning to teens everywhere, becomes the basis of their "love story".  A sick, twisted love that I assume is trying to teach us that if we just put up with enough abuse, our abusers will love us eventually.  

No thanks.  Ren should have cut bait and run as soon as Brit was nasty to her.  But she just stuck around for ALL of it.  And it was bad.
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This book was cute and quirky and made my teenage summer loving heart happy. Lovely coming of age story with a lovable female lead I definitely will be recommending this book to my students looking for a quick and easy summer themed read.
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Glad I got this book as an ARC, as I really wanted to read it but once I started I found it hard going. the first half of the book was slow so slow then suddenly it was like some one else had written it as the rest of the book was amazing and had everything I wanted from it. Just a shame you had to deal with the first half
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I received an e-arc via netgalley however this book was a DNF for me.  It also seems as though this book is on hold for publishing.  Thanks again to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with an advanced copy.
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I read this for a book tour and I don't think it was published in the end. Is there a way this can be confirmed?
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This book is a sapphic mix of Grease and Mean Girls and it’s pretty freakin’ fun! 

After stealing and crashing her step dads car, Ren is sent away to Louisiana (from Texas) for the summer to fix up houses effected by Hurricane Katrina. Ren is a lesbian with a unique personal style she’s comfortable with (half her head is shaved). The family she’s staying with has a niece, Britt, also staying there who is beautiful, blonde and stuck up, or so Ren thinks. 

One day when they’re working on a house together, Britt passes out and Ren runs to get her uncle.  After that the girls begin to open up to each other and become friends, though they can both be a bit hot and cold at times. Ren learns that Britt has syncope which causes passing out due to low blood sugar. 

Ren begins to develop feelings for Britt that she soon realizes are reciprocated and there’s a sweet summer romance but it’s brought to an abrupt end. Then Ren moves towns and schools once returning to Texas and she learns the HBIC of her new prep school is none other than Britt, who has a boyfriend (who has been alluded to earlier in the story). 

The story continues from there and it’s a really great story of a first young, queer relationship with all of the confusion and complexities. I don’t love infidelity in books but for this particular story I’m not holding it against it because of the very complex emotions and repression of (especially young) queer exploration. 

The one part I didn’t care for was when Ren (while honestly concerned) asked Britt if she’s annorexic and Britt grabs a small stomach roll to show she isn’t. This perpetuates the belief that only very thin individuals can be annorexic, when this is factually inaccurate, any size human can have or develop this eating disorder. 

Overall, this was a darling YA WLW story that I think is important for young queer girls to have available!

4 stars


Thank You to NetGalley and Victory Editing for the E-ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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Ren thought this was going to be the WORST SUMMER EVER.  She crashed her step-father's car, leaving her BFF in a full leg cast, and in the process, got shipped off to a "home for wayward girls" deep in Louisiana.  It can't get any worse, can it?  But then we meet Brit.  And her entire summer flips on its head.  Two girls loving each other should be easy, right?  Not in the deep South, where expectations are of a different kind.

I thought this was a really cute read and enjoyed it a lot.  The characters were well-written and the story kept me hooked.  I also LOVED the cover art.  I'm definitely excited to read more from Jessa Russo.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
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This book was a bit all over the place, ngl. Brit and Ren are supposed to be teenagers and exact opposites but they switch roles quite a lot and sometimes it was hard to believe they were just 17. I mean, how man 17-year-olds make references to 80's horror movies?

There were definitely parts I enjoyed and parts that made me go "hmm really?!" so it's hard to review this title. It's more a see for yourself kind of book as it depends on what you are looking for.

Some parts did fall sort of flat for me though as a lot of cliches were thrown in there for I don't know what reason, shock effect? Predictability? It took me out of the story quite a few times. There were also some loose ends or details that did not really contribute to the story like details about side characters who we then hardly hear of anymore.

Wasn't bad but this is not a book I would re-read.

I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
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Renata "Ren" Carpenter is sent off for the summer after getting into a car accident with her step-dad's car. She goes to live with Dev and his family and meets his niece Brit who she finds rude and attractive at the same time. They go from enemies to something more quickly, but Brit has to leave sooner than they both expect which causes heartbreak.

<spoiler> I was intrigued by the premise of the book. The first half of the book for the most part was enjoyable for the most part, but it would be improved with a bit of editing. The girls verbally spar at the beginning, but it would be better if there was a real cause to their antagonism. I did like the parts when they act soft around one another. My favorite moment was when Brit spends the day showing Ren around her favorite places in New Orleans. After falling for each other, they both crushed to learn that Brit has to leave after just a few weeks knowing each other.

The second act was what fell short for me. When they coincidentally reunite at the same high school, Ren is dismayed to find out that Brit is the queen bee head cheerleader with a football player boyfriend. I felt Brit lacked agency which weakened the ending even though I want the girls to be together. I feel if both leads had more character development, the ending would feel more deserved.

When Brit was too scared to come out and asks Ren if they can continue seeing each other, I understood her fear. When she is unwillingly outed by her boyfriend that she breaks up with him to be with Ren, I felt something was missing because Brit lacked agency in her coming out. There should be more time for Brit to show her confidence in accepting who she is. Changing the coming out scene or adding more chapters in the aftermath might help. Also the bullying Ren faced with paint was pretty terrible and I wondered why no adult intervened afterwards. In my opinion, the latter half of the book needs more editing.

Another issue that could be improved is how Ren views Brit. Since Brit has competed in beauty pageants, she dresses herself with that influence. Ren is a bit too over-critical about Brit's clothing while still lusting after her. I think there has to more build-up (not just them being attracted to each other) for their relationship to feel more real. </spoiler> 

Overall, Girls Who Lie Together has promise, but would really do better with some revision. 3/5
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Firstly thank you so much to Netgalley and Jessa Russo for an ARC of this book. 
Girls Who Lie Together is a LGBTQIA YA enemies to lovers novel, I’d say aimed at pre-teen to early teens. 
It was so easy reading I finished it in a few hours. I must admit I didn’t properly read the blurb so some things - like when Ren and Brit ended up in the same school - came as a surprise to me. Some things were slightly predictable but the books as a whole was reasonably enjoyable. Russo’s writing style made it s easy to tear through the book.
The characters were ok and some of the topics were relatable. I empathised with Brit and the person she felt she had to be to please those around her but found her character slightly frustrating. I loved Sterling’s character despite not getting much on her but the other characters didn’t make me overly interested. Some things were heavily stereotyped which made the book seem not so original and most of the characters had very little depth. I wasn’t particularly taken to Ren who seemed a bit judgemental and kept commenting of Brit’s body.
The whole summer love idea reminded me of Robin Talley’s Our Own Private Universe.
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Girls who lie together by Jessa Russo is a YA, LGBTQIA Romance novel. It’s about Renata ‘Ren’ who totalled her stepdads car, injuring herself and her friend who was put in a cast. She ends up getting sent to New Orleans to do a work program. She never expected to fall in love; especially not with Brit. 

I feel like this book has a lot of potential especially for the right crowd, however it just wasn’t for me and I ended up DNFing it. It was very faced paced and straight forward but felt like the writing was too much like a teen wrote it or like a fan fiction. Other than the fact that there is a lot of language I would recommend it to younger teens. 

I found that the book was quite repetitive in how I could always predict what would happen because the same thing would have just happened in the previous chapter. 

As for the characters, Brit was….quite something. She was lowkey annoying but then again I think she was going through some heavy stuff. Ron wasn’t that bad, she was just very full of herself and she desperately needed to get over that. My favourite character was for sure Dev and Lucy though, the real MVPs. 

I feel really bad because I feel like all I’m doing is bashing this book but I really do think it has potential for the right target audience 

I hope everyone who decides to read this enjoys it :D 

#girlswholietogether #NetGalley #ARC #advancedreaderscopy #jessarusso
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Girls Who Lie Together is fun, flirty and has a protagonist that will leave you in stitches.

Easy to read, with a classic storyline with an added feel-good worked in.

A good read.
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Thank you Victory Editing NetGalley Co-op and NetGalley for the ARC of this novel. The description of this as Grease meets Mean Girls definitely drew me in. 

Ren was intriguing as a main character but I had a really hard time with Brit. She really was a mean girl and pretty terrible to a lot of people and you never get a good explanation as to why. You do not meet her stepfather, the mother when shown looks to be supportive and Brit just comes across as a terrible person. Brit's choices once we get into the Grease portion of meeting your summer fling at school to maintain her reputation became unconscionable I am happy that Ren got what she wanted but oh my goodness is Brit a bad person! Sterling and Gray were fun side characters but I have to drop my enjoyment on what was done to Ren and that she allowed it to happen. 3 stars.
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This brought me out of my reading slump. Such a great read! I really loved the plot and I couldn't put this book down cause I just wanted to know what would happen next.
Thank you NetGalley for the ARC, such an honor reading this book
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