Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Review: Girl on the Other Side by Deborah Kerbel

Title: Girl on the Other Side

Author: Deborah Kerbel 
Published: 2011
Source: For Review

Tabby Freeman and Lora Froggett go to the same school, but they live in totally opposite worlds. Tabby is rich, pretty, and the most popular girl in her class. But behind closed doors, her "perfect" life is rapidly coming apart at the seams.

On the other side, Lora is smart, timid, and the constant target of bullies. While struggling to survive the piranha-infested halls of her school, she becomes increasingly nervous that somebody might discover the unbearable truth about what's been happening to her family.

Despite their differences, Tabby and Lora have something in common- they're both harbouring dark secrets and a lot of pain. Although they've never been friends, a series of strange events causes their lives to crash together in ways neither could have ever imagined. And when the dust finally settles and all their secrets are forced out into the light, will the girls be saved or destroyed? (taken from goodreads.com)
Girl on the Other Side is a quick read, that's for sure. I finished the book in one sitting. While I wasn't blown away by the plot, which was slightly predictable, I did appreciate the deep look into the lives of two girls fighting their own inner battles. 

Two of the most stereotypical girls are represented here. There's Tabby, the popular perfect princess, and Lora, the nerdy loner with no self-confidence. The juxtaposition of the two roles is more than a little cliché. Still, I can see where Kerbel is coming from. Comparing two completely different girls brings to light more similarities than you would think. 

Is bullying really that prevalent in high school? Maybe it's just me, but it seems like the torment that Lora undergoes is pretty extreme. I was proud of her as she learned to fight back and stand up for herself. I was also pleased that Tabby underwent a revolution of sorts and fixed her relationship with her parents. 

Overall, I really don't have tons to say about Girl on the Other Side. It was a fast read, but it wasn't lighthearted or superficial. Serious problems faced by many teens today are highlighted, and as the reader, I saw the many characteristics that all girls share. 

*I received this book free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.