Girls with Rebel Souls

S. & S. (Girls with Sharp Sticks: Bk. 3). Mar. 2021. 320p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781534426191.
Gr 9 Up–Mena and her friends may be AI, but they grapple with very human moral complexities in this trilogy finale, as Mena worries that the girls’ quest for justice will devolve into revenge. The novel opens with a shocking act of violence that results in a grisly death. As the body count rises and alliances come into question, Mena and the girls struggle to serve justice to monstrous men without becoming monsters themselves. Young’s finale to the “Girls With Sharp Sticks” series is full of the plot twists, urgent pacing, and musings on humanity and gender politics that readers of the first two novels will expect. The girls’ analysis that humans expect too little of themselves and therefore allow atrocities will ring true to many teen readers concerned about the world they are inheriting. Meanwhile, the girls’ friends Jackson and Quentin are held up as examples of good men, the type society should hold in high esteem rather than protecting predators. Wrapping up all the loose ends of this trilogy proves to be an unwieldy task. The resolution, after so much mystery and such high stakes, ends up feeling small and anticlimactic. The driving motivation of the ultimate antagonists also becomes somewhat lost in the action and big reveals. However, readers invested in the fate of Mena and her sisters will likely excuse any missteps to see the heroes reach the end of their journey.
VERDICT An uneven resolution to a thought-provoking trilogy.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing