cover image Not Like Other Girls

Not Like Other Girls

Meredith Adamo. Bloomsbury, $19.99 (448p) ISBN 978-1-5476-1400-4

Debut author Adamo unflinchingly reckons with rape culture in this twisty, gripping mystery. Jo-Lynn Kirby used to reign supreme at her Rochester, N.Y., magnet high school. But after stolen private photos of her are leaked to her classmates, she’s ostracized and branded as the “Senior Slut,” events that derail her ability to focus on schoolwork and land her on academic probation. When former best friend Maddie Price turns to Jo with an enigmatic plea for help, Jo is suspicious; but after Maddie misses their meet-up and mysteriously vanishes, Jo is unnerved. As Jo’s investigation into Maddie’s disappearance homes in on a dangerous truth, she confronts a revelation of her own about a night she doesn’t want to remember. Edgy and authentic, this stunning gut-punch of a novel unravels the complexities of teen girlhood, toxic friendships, and trauma while a romantic subplot sensitively explores the challenges of reclaiming one’s sexuality after surviving sexual assault. Vividly voiced in Jo’s blunt, biting first-person narration, this is both a timely, suspense-building thriller and a powerful story of healing. Characters read as white. Ages 14–up. Agent: Andrea Morrison, Writers House. (Apr.)