Wednesday, December 7, 2016

3 Reasons You Should Read The Female of the Species

Hey friends! We are back for another book discussion.  This month, I picked The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis. This book has been all over the blogsphere recently so obviously we were both dying to read it.  It's a little darker of a read and the summary is as follows:

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.

Sounds pretty interesting, doesn't it? Here are our 3 reasons you should read The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis:

1. Females are Strong as Hell. 
Jen  Says:
Unfortunately, sometimes women are viewed as meek, submissive creatures.  This book pretty much blows away that gender stereotype.  When women, or someone they closely care about, are in danger women are at their primal strongest. They are capable of the same things as all humans when that fight or flight instinct is tapped into. Their loyalty is unchallenged. They can be vengeful. Females are strong as hell.

Heather Says:
Jen nailed it. It was kind of amazing to read a book that had female characters that weren't just strong as hell, but also fully formed, three dimensional people. Flaws and all, it was empowering to read about strong ladies who also felt real.

2. Accurate Portrayal of Teenage Life
Jen Says:
Man, did I find this book relatable when it comes to the portrayal of teenage life.  This book is gritty and it doesn't sugarcoat life in general. Teen's lives can be a messy place.  Teens are trying to navigate this new world where they aren't exactly children but aren't quite adults yet.  It was very refreshing for them to be experimenting with drugs and alcohol, being bullied and having to face some real life shit, including sexual assault. Life isn't a fairy tale and I love it when an author can keep it so real.

Heather Says:
Being a teenager is such a weird time. You have this looming responsibility of adulthood but you're technically still a child. You make mistakes and are really kind of self involved and weird. This book felt like a very real portrayal of teen life. Teens who have sex and drink and party, but also take care of school business and aren't always nice or perfect.

3.  Rape Culture
Jen Says:
Despite what some white men might say, the rape culture is still very much alive and kicking. I don't know one lady who hasn't had to deal with some sort of unwanted sexual advance in their life.  It sucks and it was great this book went into how prevalent sexual assaults happen.  Slut-shaming is also addressed in such a healthy way and it can make you reevaluate how women relate to other women. It was super though provoking.

Heather Says:
Rape culture is everywhere. It feels like we literally cannot escape it (especially as women). This book took a topic that is so prevalent in our lives and culture and addressed it head on. I loved that it wasn't afraid to call out the sexism and double standards of some characters. It also took a situation at a party that feels like it literally could happen (has happened, happens all the time) and kind of had a character kick ass and shut that shit down.

I went into thinking this book was going to be a bit Dexter-esque, and parts of it really was, but it was so much more than a good serial killer ridding the world from evil. It was a very dark, yet a beautiful read that had some ironic humor.  What did you guys think? Let's discuss it in the comments!

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