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Review & Blog Tour: Undiscovered Gyrl

August 11, 2009

Undiscovered Gyrlgif

Seventeen-year old Katie graduated from high school and decided to defer college for a year, so she can figure out what she wants to do with her life.  When Katie told her English teacher about her plans, her teacher suggested she start a journal or a blog.  Katie decides to blog about her life.  She is very frank – blogging about her friends, her boyfriend, her job and her relationships with her parents and step-parents.  Katie makes some poor decisions and seems to struggle at figuring out who she is in this world.  At times, it seems like she’s trying to sabotage herself.  She writes about sex, alcohol and drugs.

Once I started Undiscovered Gyrl by Allison Burnett, I couldn’t put it down, yet I found parts of it deeply disturbing.  Katie seemed like a lost soul to me and seemed to have very little self respect.  A few passages that stood out for me were:

I used my favorite line, how the thing I love most about Rory is that he loves me.  How I wasn’t in love with him at all but that I was afraid to dump him because I was scared of being alone.  How since I was eleven years old, I have had a boyfriend every single minute except for about three months.

. . . Even though I have an outgoing personality, deep down I am not confident at all.  I can still taste the floor, if you know what I mean.

I found myself thinking and talking about this book a lot as I read it. I found Katie’s lack of self respect and confidence troubling.   I’ve know several young ladies who resembled Katie and I hope she is not typical of today’s young women.  There is a lot to discuss in this book and I would love to find some young women who’ve read it to see what they think.  This book does contain crude sexual innuendos and portrays drug and alcohol use, but I think parents of teens should read it.  Check out the great website for Undiscovered Gyrl.

Review copy provided by Vintage Books.

36 Comments leave one →
  1. August 11, 2009 5:11 am

    I just read Violet’s review of this one.Check that one out 🙂
    I am very sure, today’s girl’s are not like this.

  2. August 11, 2009 6:49 am

    That does sound a bit disturbing, as well as very lonely.

  3. August 11, 2009 6:52 am

    I hope Veens is right! I would hate to think of a generation of young women with self-esteem and confidence issues. I like books that make me think, I’ll have to see if this one is at the library.

  4. August 11, 2009 7:35 am

    This is probably isn’t the book for me since I don’t usually like to go into it knowing that it is going to be disturbing. But, I do like books that make you think and want to talk to others about it.

  5. August 11, 2009 7:47 am

    Oh wow! I’m not sure I want to read about this since I have a 10 year old daughter. Yet somehow I feel that I should be aware of what’s going on out there!

  6. August 11, 2009 8:10 am

    I so hope my daughter doesn’t feel like that girl. I hope she has more self-confidence than that. I think this book would make me uncomfortable.

  7. August 11, 2009 8:29 am

    There IS a lot to discuss in this book. I am wondering what you thought of the ending. Did you like it? Looks like I’m the only one who has a problem with it 🙂

  8. August 11, 2009 9:07 am

    What sad quotes! I think you are right – parents of teens could benefit from knowing what some teens go through even if it is not their kids – it might be friends of their kids.

  9. August 11, 2009 9:15 am

    I’ve seen several of the tour stops for this book. It continues to fascinate me. I hope that young women today are not as lacking in confidence as this character.

  10. August 11, 2009 10:01 am

    It sounds like you and your readers are poised for a lot of really great discussion around my book, and I am excited to read it. I hope you will all post Spoiler Alerts, though, if you discuss the ending, just out of fairness to the new readers…

    Thanks for reading,

    Allison Burnett

    • August 11, 2009 12:39 pm

      oops!!! I’m sorry, I just meant to ask whether she liked it or not. I hate spoilers myself and never thought my comment could attract them. Sorry about that 🙂

  11. August 11, 2009 11:21 am

    This books sounds so good Kathy. What we see on the outside is not always what is on the inside of a person. Thanks for the review.

  12. August 11, 2009 11:22 am

    Ugh, I look back on high school and remember how I just dramatized all my “issues”. I didn’t have any real issues…life was pretty damn easy, but I felt the need to make it seem like it wasn’t. I’m pretty sure Livejournal existed simply for emo teens to whine about problems that seemed so important at the time. In a way, blogs are a good way to vent those frustrations because at least you aren’t bottling it in and someone else can talk about it with you. But it is unfortunate that anyone could have such low self-esteem.

  13. August 11, 2009 11:55 am

    I have to say I worry for my 13 year old niece as I think that low self-esteem and even lower self-respect are common place for young girls. I see the way her friends act (much more boy crazy and forward than my friends and I were at this age) and the behaviors and mannerisms they carry and I find it quite distressing.

    This sounds like a book that sits with you for a long time, one that gives maybe too much perspective into a young girl’s life.

    Thank you for the wonderful review.

  14. August 11, 2009 12:05 pm

    I think there will always been issues with confidence when it comes to young girls growing into women. It’s just that some of them grow out of it ,whereas others do not.

    My book group had a side conversation about self esteem once. Are you born with it? Or is it something that can be cultivated? Most went with “born with it” whereas I believe it can be cultivated.

  15. August 11, 2009 12:13 pm

    This sounds like an intense and disturbing read. My daughter seems very confident to me, but she’s really been expanding her world this summer and we haven’t talked much lately. I hope she’ll be able to retain her sense of self throughout all these changes.

  16. August 11, 2009 12:26 pm

    I want to read this, but I do think being unsure of oneself and lacking self-esteem is quite common especially for girls. I know it’s a constant battle for me.

  17. August 11, 2009 1:29 pm

    Unfortunately, I know way too many young girls that sound like the main character. This is a book that I will most certainly read. Excellent review Kathy!

  18. August 11, 2009 3:20 pm

    Yours is a great review Kathy! I just finished reading this book and am going to review it. I had no idea what to expect from it and reading it was quite an interesting experience!

    Thank you for the info about the website! I hadn’t even thought to look for one.


  19. justicejenniferreads permalink
    August 11, 2009 3:31 pm

    This book sounds like something I would enjoy. I’m definitely adding it to my reading list. I also know a couple other people who might enjoy the story line. Great review. Thanks.

  20. August 11, 2009 4:21 pm

    I’ve seen this book around, but I didn’t think I would enjoy it. Now that I’ve read your review, I think I need to read it. Thank you. =)

  21. August 11, 2009 4:39 pm

    I feel like I’ve read a lot of books adapted around this theme — which is, of course, just those universal feelings of growing up, struggling to find out who we are and in whom we should confide! I have to say, I like the cover art… and it sounds relevant to today’s teens. I’ll keep an eye out! 🙂

  22. August 11, 2009 5:30 pm

    Excellent review, Kathy. Books that raise issues like this one deserve to have our attention. They often serve as springboards for great conversations. I’ve written this down as I want my daughter to read this in preparation for the teen years of her two daughters/my precious granddaughters. I do shutter when I think about those turbulent years ahead.

  23. August 11, 2009 7:24 pm

    Yours is the first review I saw of this book and I love that you couldn’t put it down. I received the ARC and you’ve put a little fire under me now. 🙂

  24. August 11, 2009 9:51 pm

    Kathy, good review. My interest is definitely piqued on this now. Thanks for sharing.

  25. August 11, 2009 10:11 pm

    This one sounds great Kathy. I had not heard of it prior to your post–so thanks

  26. August 11, 2009 11:36 pm

    I’m with Ti…I think self-confidence can be cultivated. I think a large part of it is what the young women see around them. If they do not see healthy relationships and confident women in their own family, then it is easier for them to mimic what their friends do, or what the media portrays (hello Twilight, I’m looking at YOU).

  27. August 12, 2009 2:29 am

    Oh how funny, I didn’t know when I added it my mailbox post that you were about to review it, It’s a coincidence 😀 I’m so glad you enjoyed it even if you did find parts disturbing. The person that sent it to me really enjoyed it too. Now I’m going to have to bump it up my tbr list and throw my whole system out of whack! (kidding, I have no system)

  28. Carol permalink
    August 12, 2009 1:29 pm

    This sounds like a tough book to read, but one that’s worth it.

  29. August 12, 2009 3:42 pm

    Wow, I am more and more curious about reading this one! It sounds really interesting, and I love when books get a little disturbing since it’s when they make me think. Great review!

  30. August 12, 2009 9:30 pm

    When I saw that you had reviewed this book I was really intrigued. I had heard that it was a bit startling in it’s candidness, and have been really interested in seeing what kinds of reviews it would get. After reading your review I think I will have to grab a copy. Those quotes you provided really hooked me! Great review.

  31. August 13, 2009 4:13 pm

    Sounds like a fascinating book. I would like to think that young women today are not like that, but honestly I think there are more than we’d like to know about. Low self esteem runs rampant in young women and can be very destructive. Great review of this one, Kathy!

  32. stacybuckeye permalink
    August 13, 2009 7:32 pm

    This is the second review I’ve read and it didn’t make me think I would like it any more than the first one did.

  33. August 13, 2009 8:09 pm

    I’ve heard a lot about this book lately, and it sounds interesting. Thanks for the review!

  34. August 14, 2009 10:16 pm

    I think when you are young and a bit silly, blogging about your life might not be a good idea. When I read over my journals from “back in the day,” I just cringe.

  35. August 15, 2009 8:10 am

    Great review! Books like these make me fear my daughter’s teenage years.

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