Girl on the Verge
by Pintip Dunn
Published by: Kensington
Publication date: June 27th 2017
Genres: Thriller, Young Adult
From the author of The Darkest Lie comes a compelling, provocative story for fans of I Was Here and Vanishing Girls, about a high school senior straddling two worlds, unsure how she fits in either—and the journey of self-discovery that leads her to surprising truths.
In her small Kansas town, at her predominantly white school, Kanchana doesn’t look like anyone else. But at home, her Thai grandmother chides her for being too westernized. Only through the clothing Kan designs in secret can she find a way to fuse both cultures into something distinctly her own.
When her mother agrees to provide a home for a teenage girl named Shelly, Kan sees a chance to prove herself useful. Making Shelly feel comfortable is easy at first—her new friend is eager to please, embraces the family’s Thai traditions, and clearly looks up to Kan. Perhaps too much. Shelly seems to want everything Kanchana has, even the blond, blue-eyed boy she has a crush on. As Kan’s growing discomfort compels her to investigate Shelly’s past, she’s shocked to find how much it intersects with her own—and just how far Shelly will go to belong…
Pintip Dunn is a New York Times bestselling author of YA fiction. She graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B. in English Literature and Language. She received her J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was an editor of the YALE LAW JOURNAL.
Pintip is represented by literary agent Beth Miller of Writers House. Her debut novel, FORGET TOMORROW, won the RWA RITA® for Best First Book. Her other novels include THE DARKEST LIE, REMEMBER YESTERDAY, and the novella BEFORE TOMORROW.
She lives with her husband and children in Maryland. You can learn more about Pintip and her books at http://www.pintipdunn.com
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Quick Reasons: CREEPTASTIC CREEPO for the win!; I actually REALLY admire the way Pintip Dunn handled this book; there’s some awesome stuff happening with plot and characters; fast-paced, chilling read; I couldn’t put this down once I picked it up; this read is bound to stick with me
Huge thanks to Pintip Dunn, Kensington Publishing, and Xpresso Book Tours for sending me a free egalley of this title in exchange for an honest review! This in no way altered my read of or opinions on this book.
I have, in recent weeks, read a TON of books with creeptastic creepo characters…and I’m LOVING it. I’m having a huge blast stepping just a little outside my “normal” reads and, instead, straight into some uncomfortably wonderful journeys. There’s something about mixing it up that, I guess, has been calling my name LOUDLY lately–and books like this one, from Pintip Dunn, are helping to answer the call.
AND THIS BOOK, PENGUINS! I can’t even begin to explain how wild and unexpected this journey was, so I’ll instead break it down into some of the finer points. First things first–Pintip Dunn did something super interesting (and, now I’ve put the pieces together, TOTALLY AWESOME) with the POVs in this title. See….one perspective is written in first person, while the other is written from third. For the first few chapters, I kept asking myself WHY it was like this. It wasn’t until the very end, the BIG reveal (which I, unfortunately, sort of caught onto at the 65% mark in one of my infamous–and rather annoying–epiphany moments) that I realized the actual reason behind this. Of course, I can’t tell YOU what it is, because that would be spoilery and awful of me–but trust me, it is AWESOME, and I am tipping my hat to Pintip Dunn for having the foresight and forethought to do this from the get go. I just…. gaaaaaah! If you’ve read this book and you’re not sure what I’m talking about, feel free to message me on any of my social media or email outlets–I’d be happy to talk specifics!
These characters are beautifully rendered. They are complex, and struggling with some pretty heavy things–things I haven’t necessarily seen tackled in other books thus far. I also really love all the nods to this family’s culture and heritage–it helped to more fully round out the characters and the story for me, as a reader. The plot is fast-paced and tense, with a ton of foreboding and a sense of “race to the finish” that picks up almost from page one. Also, the character reactions and interactions are wholly believable, and easy to understand or empathize with.
Overall, I really enjoyed my first foray into Pintip Dunn’s work, and will for sure be picking her up again in the future! These characters are well-rounded and complex, and the plot is super dramatic. While I easily picked up on the biggest “reveal” of the story, I REALLY loved the way Pintip Dunn played with POVs. I definitely recommend this to lovers of thrillers/suspense, creeptastic characters, and fast-paced action! Don’t get too close, penguins; this pact is dangerous!