Book Review – The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis


I’m living my life waiting for the man who comes for me like one did for Anna, with hungry eyes behind the wheel and rope in the trunk.
I’m ready.

– The Female of the Species

Hello Bookworms, today’s blog post is a review on a book that I initially read a couple of months ago, but have found myself re-reading it at least every two weeks. For some reason, I am drawn back to this novel, and although by this point, I know every single thing that is going to happen, the book keeps getting better. I felt the need to write my review on this book as I have seen so many negative reviews, and need to tell you guys how much I LOVED it! The Female of the Species is a novel that keeps you thinking about it long after you’ve read it. You could say I am ~slightly~ obsessed😜. There is just something about the way it was written, to the characters, to the ending, that I know will keep me coming back to it for years to come.

Genre: Thriller, Contemporary, Mystery, Young Adult.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐(5/5 stars)

Publisher: Published September 20th 2016 by Katherine Tegen Books

Length: Paperback, 341 pages

TW: Sexual Assault, Rape, Murder, Bullying.

Summary: A contemporary YA novel that examines rape culture through alternating perspectives. Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it. Three years ago, when her older sister, Anna, was murdered and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best—the language of violence. While her own crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people. Not with Jack, the star athlete who wants to really know her but still feels guilty over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered. And not with Peekay, the preacher’s kid with a defiant streak who befriends Alex while they volunteer at an animal shelter. Not anyone. As their senior year unfolds, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting these three teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever. (Goodreads)

Recommendation: This book truly shattered me to my core. I’m still not sure if it was the characters, the plot, the writing, or the ending that makes me love this book as much as I do. This book is so heartbreaking, devastating and painful that there is nothing to do other than to keep reading. Let’s start with the characters; the main character in this novel was Alex Craft, who I was surprised to find that many readers disliked. But let me tell you, if you didn’t already know, I love characters that are flawed, complex and vulnerable, and that is exactly what Alex is. Her personality is what made this book as brutal and amazing as it is. Following her, there is Jack, the typical popular jock that is written into every high school story EVER WRITTEN! But fortunately, in this novel, Jack sees something in Alex that nobody else does, and as he gets closer to her, and exposes what her true dark imperfections are, although any rational person would run the other way, Jack stays. There is a little bit of romance between Alex and Jack, and although I didn’t hate it….. it didn’t impact the plot at all. Next, there is Peekay, Alex’s friend(possibly her only friend), and Branley, Jack’s ex-girlfriend. These last two characters although vital to the narrative, are insignificant to this review. Overall, these characters mesh so fell together and are so well-developed. I have to admit I cried…… on multiple occasions.. especially the ending. To me, this book is one of my favourites, because of how intense and significant the themes that are dealt with are. So if the summary even slightly interests you, you should read it. Trust me…

A little about the author:  Mindy McGinnis is an Edgar Award-winning novelist who writes across multiple genres, including post-apocalyptic, historical, thriller, contemporary, mystery, and fantasy. While her settings may change, you can always count on Mindy’s books to deliver grit, truth, and an unflinching look at humanity and the world around us.(Goodreads)

Praise for The Female of the Species

“It’s raw. Not “raw for YA.” Real-deal raw. And violent. And unforgettable. McGinnis explores both and she goes there in a way no one really has before in YA. This is Kill Bill in high school, but with more nuance, bolder choices and a true female perspective.” (The Globe and Mail)

Whether a catcall, an unwelcome touch, or more, sexual aggression towards females happens daily; McGinnis explores how one teen uses violence for justice in this gripping story that should be read and discussed by teens, as well as those who work with them.”- Booklist

“Holy crap is it good.”- Bustle

-Thanks for reading!

2 thoughts on “Book Review – The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis”

  1. This book has been on my TBR for a couple of months already, but now I’m really excited to pick it up! I had no idea it was this dark, though, so I’m glad your review gave me a heads up about that! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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