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Girl, Unframed

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A teen girl’s summer with her mother turns sinister in this thriller about the dangers of unwanted attention. Sydney Reilly has a bad feeling about going home to San Francisco before she even gets on the plane. How could she not? Her mother is Lila Shore—the Lila Shore—a film star who prizes her beauty and male attention above all else…certainly above her daughter. But Sydne A teen girl’s summer with her mother turns sinister in this thriller about the dangers of unwanted attention. Sydney Reilly has a bad feeling about going home to San Francisco before she even gets on the plane. How could she not? Her mother is Lila Shore—the Lila Shore—a film star who prizes her beauty and male attention above all else…certainly above her daughter. But Sydney’s worries multiply when she discovers that Lila is involved with the dangerous Jake, an art dealer with shady connections. Jake loves all beautiful objects, and Syndey can feel his eyes on her whenever he’s around. And he’s not the only one. Sydney is starting to attract attention—good and bad—wherever she goes: from sweet, handsome Nicco Ricci, from the unsettling construction worker next door, and even from Lila. Behaviors that once seemed like misunderstandings begin to feel like threats as the summer grows longer and hotter. It’s unnerving, how beauty is complicated, and objects have histories, and you can be looked at without ever being seen. But real danger, crimes of passion, the kind of stuff where someone gets killed—it only mostly happens in the movies, Sydney is sure. Until the night something life-changing happens on the stairs that lead to the beach. A thrilling night that goes suddenly very wrong. When loyalties are called into question. And when Sydney learns a terrible truth: beautiful objects can break.


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A teen girl’s summer with her mother turns sinister in this thriller about the dangers of unwanted attention. Sydney Reilly has a bad feeling about going home to San Francisco before she even gets on the plane. How could she not? Her mother is Lila Shore—the Lila Shore—a film star who prizes her beauty and male attention above all else…certainly above her daughter. But Sydne A teen girl’s summer with her mother turns sinister in this thriller about the dangers of unwanted attention. Sydney Reilly has a bad feeling about going home to San Francisco before she even gets on the plane. How could she not? Her mother is Lila Shore—the Lila Shore—a film star who prizes her beauty and male attention above all else…certainly above her daughter. But Sydney’s worries multiply when she discovers that Lila is involved with the dangerous Jake, an art dealer with shady connections. Jake loves all beautiful objects, and Syndey can feel his eyes on her whenever he’s around. And he’s not the only one. Sydney is starting to attract attention—good and bad—wherever she goes: from sweet, handsome Nicco Ricci, from the unsettling construction worker next door, and even from Lila. Behaviors that once seemed like misunderstandings begin to feel like threats as the summer grows longer and hotter. It’s unnerving, how beauty is complicated, and objects have histories, and you can be looked at without ever being seen. But real danger, crimes of passion, the kind of stuff where someone gets killed—it only mostly happens in the movies, Sydney is sure. Until the night something life-changing happens on the stairs that lead to the beach. A thrilling night that goes suddenly very wrong. When loyalties are called into question. And when Sydney learns a terrible truth: beautiful objects can break.

30 review for Girl, Unframed

  1. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)

    Fuck, y'all. This one really hurt. It is a book about the millions of ways that men treat women of all ages like objects. It is also a book about a girl who's mother prioritizes her own beauty and the opinion of men over her own daughter and.. this book hit me hard. It hit me SO personally in ways that a book never has before and I am going to be thinking about this one for a LONG time. TW: sexual harassment, domestic abuse, emotional manipulation

  2. 5 out of 5

    Madalyn (Novel Ink)

    It’s no surprise that I liked this, because I trust Deb Caletti implicitly at this point, but this really was unique and wonderful and much-needed. The synopsis pitches this as a YA thriller, but more than anything else, it’s a gut punch of a YA coming-of-age story about what it’s like to grow up as a young woman in a society that hates women.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)

    This is such a hard book to review because there were just so many elements to it. So many surprises and so many hard, uncomfortable things about it. Sometimes being thrown out of your comfort zone isn't a bad thing. It helps us grow, think of things in a new light and can even make us exam things around us that we never noticed before. Girl, Unframed most of all, is a story about self discovery. A story about growing up, finding out who you are and what you want in life with all the bumps and br This is such a hard book to review because there were just so many elements to it. So many surprises and so many hard, uncomfortable things about it. Sometimes being thrown out of your comfort zone isn't a bad thing. It helps us grow, think of things in a new light and can even make us exam things around us that we never noticed before. Girl, Unframed most of all, is a story about self discovery. A story about growing up, finding out who you are and what you want in life with all the bumps and bruises that growing up gives you along the way. Really, it's the good, the bad, and the sometimes ugly about it all with a few brighter, sunnier moments thrown in. It is not a thriller although it does have some pretty intense moments, it is not the mystery read you might be lead to believe from the description but it is captivating and rough, and completely will have you turning the pages wondering what will happen next. *ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*

  4. 5 out of 5

    Nenia ✨️ The Trash Empress ✨️ Campbell

    Deb Caletti was my jam in high school. She was like Sarah Dessen with more edge. I really want to read this! It's set in San Francisco!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nev

    Girl, Unframed is partly a YA thriller, you spend the whole book knowing that something terrible has happened and are waiting to figure out the specifics. There’s a dark, ominous feeling that permeates the whole story. However, much more of the book is about a teenage girl growing up and having to deal with the uncomfortable attention that she’s now getting from adult men. Another large focus of the story is her strained relationship with her mom, who places her relationships with men and career Girl, Unframed is partly a YA thriller, you spend the whole book knowing that something terrible has happened and are waiting to figure out the specifics. There’s a dark, ominous feeling that permeates the whole story. However, much more of the book is about a teenage girl growing up and having to deal with the uncomfortable attention that she’s now getting from adult men. Another large focus of the story is her strained relationship with her mom, who places her relationships with men and career over her own daughter. I think this book really shines when it comes to explaining the fear that comes along with being a young woman and feeling unsafe in the world because of how older men interact with you. The thriller elements of the story are definitely there, and it made for a compelling read to get the little hints throughout of what was to come at the end. But I think if someone read this only wanting the thriller they might be disappointed with how much of the book is really not focused on that. My only real complaint is that sometimes I thought that the dialogue for the main character made her sound much younger than the 15/16 year old she is throughout the story. Maybe that was on purpose, to show she’s still just a kid and to contrast that with how the creepy older guys treat her. However sometimes it just seemed like she spoke like a 12 year old. It wasn’t everything she said, just occasionally I’d feel like it was way too young. But overall I think this is a great book. It just didn’t quite hit me the same way that Deb Caletti’s A Heart in a Body in the World did, which is a god tier book for me.

  6. 4 out of 5

    PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps

    GIRL, UNFRAMED started off strong, with narrator Sydney experiencing subtle and not-so-subtle sexism from boys, men and her actress mom’s internalized misogyny. Slow, repetitive pacing had me waiting for *something* to happen. We know from the blurb a crime is committed. I didn’t expect to wait until 90% of the story and then to be so underwhelmed at what happened and how it was handled. I appreciate that Deb Caletti wanted to show how even in the 21st century, females still experience a great de GIRL, UNFRAMED started off strong, with narrator Sydney experiencing subtle and not-so-subtle sexism from boys, men and her actress mom’s internalized misogyny. Slow, repetitive pacing had me waiting for *something* to happen. We know from the blurb a crime is committed. I didn’t expect to wait until 90% of the story and then to be so underwhelmed at what happened and how it was handled. I appreciate that Deb Caletti wanted to show how even in the 21st century, females still experience a great degree of sexism, harassment and worse. I was Sydney’s age in 1980 and not much has changed if her experiences are reflective of teenage girls. Of course, Sydney’s narcissistic mother makes matters worse. Lila isn’t completely without sympathy. Her own mother, a better grandmother to Sydney than mother, stood silent while Lila was sexually harassed by Hollywood producers. Caletti had the right ingredients for a spectacular story. The execution of GIRL, UNFRAMED fell flat and the ending wasn’t satisfying.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I received this as an eARC through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Sydney loves her life at her boarding school. She can be a regular teen with great best friends. However, occasionally she is forced to stay with her celebrity mother, who is extremely self-involved and not a great parent. Sydney is to spend her summer with her mother and she prepares herself to get through it as quickly as possible. What she didn't plan on was her mother's new boyfriend, Jake. He is supposed to be an I received this as an eARC through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Sydney loves her life at her boarding school. She can be a regular teen with great best friends. However, occasionally she is forced to stay with her celebrity mother, who is extremely self-involved and not a great parent. Sydney is to spend her summer with her mother and she prepares herself to get through it as quickly as possible. What she didn't plan on was her mother's new boyfriend, Jake. He is supposed to be an art dealer, but his creep factor makes him seem like there is more going on there. When Sydney strikes up a relationship with a local guy, Jake becomes oddly possessive. The longer Sydney stays with her mother the more horrific the interactions with Jake become. Sydney is desperate for her friend to come visit and be a buffer, but is this really going to help? This book works through Sydney trip into womanhood and what that means in the world. As her body has developed and she fills the standard of beauty, men (and her mother) begin to treat her differently. I had difficulty with the writing style, which is just a personal preference thing. I thought that the author keep the mystery crime a mystery for far too long and after awhile I became frustrated with it. Also, I feel like I never fully got into the character's head.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    This is hands down one of the best YA books I've ever read. Not so much because of the story itself (a compelling coming-of-age tale with an unraveling crime mixed in) but because throughout it, Deb Caletti meticulously reveals the internal rage & confusion felt by teenage girls who grow up in a patriarchal society. The reader sees 16-year-old Sydney work through her feelings regarding how teen girls are expected to be desirable without having their own desires, how they (& we) often push down t This is hands down one of the best YA books I've ever read. Not so much because of the story itself (a compelling coming-of-age tale with an unraveling crime mixed in) but because throughout it, Deb Caletti meticulously reveals the internal rage & confusion felt by teenage girls who grow up in a patriarchal society. The reader sees 16-year-old Sydney work through her feelings regarding how teen girls are expected to be desirable without having their own desires, how they (& we) often push down their own feelings of discomfort in order to be polite to men, how street harassment buries itself deep down in our bones & makes us feel unsafe, always. And SO MUCH MORE. Parts of this book destroyed me with its realness. I underlined so many passages, thinking YES YES EXACTLY THIS. It's wildly, devastatingly good & you should absolutely read it as soon as possible.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kira Thebookbella

    "My body was a billboard to remark on. My body was someone else's entertainment, a story that had notthing to do with me at all. I was a painting. Girl, oil on canvas". Sydney Reilly spends most of her year living with her grandmother and attending private school. It's summer and she is getting ready to go back home to San Francisco to stay with her mom, Lila for the summer. Lila is this famous actress who lives in a large house. Sydney has a bad feeling about going home. It nags at her and "My body was a billboard to remark on. My body was someone else's entertainment, a story that had notthing to do with me at all. I was a painting. Girl, oil on canvas". Sydney Reilly spends most of her year living with her grandmother and attending private school. It's summer and she is getting ready to go back home to San Francisco to stay with her mom, Lila for the summer. Lila is this famous actress who lives in a large house. Sydney has a bad feeling about going home. It nags at her and is a constantly in the background of her mind; and impending dread that something bad is going to happen. This feeling begins to crystallize as she meets Lila's new boyfriend, Jake who is a mysterious and dangerous man. Sydney has just turned 16 and as she develops into a woman she is also turning heads. She feels eyes on her and she feels them from many different men. This book has a feeling of being almost a Hollywood crime thriller as we have a a movie star and dangerous men in the picture. This is part of the feeling of this book but it is more apart of the scenery than apart of the wider plot line. What this book is really about is desire, beauty and the need to be seen. People can look at you like you're an object and never really see you. You can be treated like a silly girl and never really hold any value other than the desire others have for you and your beauty as currency for your worth. Sydney's narrative POV really dives into wanting to not merely exist in the world, but to be fully present in it. To be valued for more than an object, but to really be seen as a human being. This point is expounded upon with Jake who is an art dealer. We see all the paintings and sculptures he deals in the be that of naked women, some of them faceless. These paintings are valued for only their entertainment value as fully nude artistic displays of women that are widely sought after even on illegal markets. The women themselves, in these paintings, mean very little. The real value in the paintings is in what they have to offer for the men who buy them. With Lila being an actress who is regularly framed on the big screen as well as on the movie posters of her house we see what women become when they have experienced a lifetime of being devalued. Lila, ironically enough, is never referred to "mom" or "mother" or any variant of the like by Sydney. Lila is another faceless women on a canvas who has spent her life doing whatever she needed to to feel worthy and valuable. This often lead Lila to having toxic relationships with men and not being a real parent to Sydney. Sydney frequently felt the emotional absence of her mother. Sydney has a love internet throughout this called Nicco. His angle is also quite interesting as he begins by being the only one who does not immediately notice Sydney. He does not stare at her or treat her as an object. He is 17 years-old and the strong contrast to the rest of the males in this book. He dose not immediate rush into treating Sydney like property. Even with his sharp contrast, he is not discribed as being the one that "sees" her. Rather he is used to show how desire can go both ways. Sydney desires Nicco, and she discribes how it overwhelms and consumes her. It is a fire that burns. This book really dives into how being seen as beautiful is just as dangerous as being seen as flawed. There is power in being beautiful, there is power in being desired. But those things are also made to feel shameful if they are too wild and uncontrollable. How an individual can be shamed for the same things that make them feel powerful and end up feeling powerless. This book really pronounces all of the things that women deal with. This is a feminist and powerful narrative that has left me with many thoughts. It captures beauty, desire and objectification really well and it drives it home. Our dangerous man Jake and the mystery behind him isn't all that well fleshed out. This was used as a backdrop to the narrative the author felt was more important to get across. The narrative of being truly seen. You never ended up with all the details about Jake or why he was dangerous, but he knew enough to know he was not a good person. Nicco was also a character that did not feel well fleshed out. I did like him for the role that he played, but he was also more of a backdrop to the narrative the author wanted to emphasize. Nicco was the one being desired and we needed to see how desire someone (Sydney) could be effected by beauty and desire. Nicco was often referred to as being extremely good looking. Overall this was a fantastic book and made so many excellent points about desire and the objectification of women. It lightly discusses the double standard of girls who lose their virginity as being less virtuous, while guys don't have to worry about that. This book was powerful and will leave a lasting impression.

  10. 5 out of 5

    A C

    3.5??? I don't know how to rate this. On the one hand, this book really examined how the female body is viewed by the word, showing sexism and misogyny at it's finest. On the other hand, I've read stories with almost the exact same narrative before. There was no tension, no suspense, no "oh my god what's going to happen?" The Bad Men were Bad, without much other characterization. There is zero depth to the Bad Men in the story. The Good Man, Nicco, is a Good Man because...? I'm not actually sure. I 3.5??? I don't know how to rate this. On the one hand, this book really examined how the female body is viewed by the word, showing sexism and misogyny at it's finest. On the other hand, I've read stories with almost the exact same narrative before. There was no tension, no suspense, no "oh my god what's going to happen?" The Bad Men were Bad, without much other characterization. There is zero depth to the Bad Men in the story. The Good Man, Nicco, is a Good Man because...? I'm not actually sure. I just know he's supposed to be the Good Man. And...that's it. Very flat. And I guess that's my main complaint. These characters all felt flat. Even the main character. She would be told something awful, like that one of the other characters was raped when she was 12. TWELVE. T W E L V E. And our main character responds with? A paragraph or two of feeling sorry for the other character, and then life continues as normal. Wow. So...I don't know. I felt like this book should have had so much more to it. Just...a lot MORE.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Gary Anderson

    As the only child of the troublesome movie seductress Lila Shore, Sydney Reilly tries to keep her distance from her mother by living in Seattle with her grandmother Edwina. But in the summer she turns sixteen, Syd is called to live with her mother in San Francisco. Syd reluctantly leaves behind the life of security she knows with her grandmother, friends, and friends’ families to enter her mother’s high-flying life of glamour. Lila Shore lives in a posh mansion with a lovable dog named Max and b As the only child of the troublesome movie seductress Lila Shore, Sydney Reilly tries to keep her distance from her mother by living in Seattle with her grandmother Edwina. But in the summer she turns sixteen, Syd is called to live with her mother in San Francisco. Syd reluctantly leaves behind the life of security she knows with her grandmother, friends, and friends’ families to enter her mother’s high-flying life of glamour. Lila Shore lives in a posh mansion with a lovable dog named Max and boyfriend Jake, a surly, reckless, shallow guy with a mysterious business life. Syd is aware that her long legs and athletic build make her uncomfortably attractive to men who have no business ogling a sixteen-year old girl, so when she meets Nicco, a cute boy her own age, she is unsure how to balance her feelings for him and her fears about males with bad intentions. In Girl, Unframed Deb Caletti delivers a riveting novel about family, friends, and fear. The novel begins with episodes about a relatively normal girl who suddenly finds herself in a surreal lifestyle, but as it proceeds, the ominous list of artifacts and exhibits in each chapter’s heading promises that something violent will unfold before the book’s conclusion. Along the way, Syd’s narration explores how and why girls feel annoyed and distressed by the actions of males they encounter in daily life. Syd perceptively connects her thoughts to how women are portrayed in classical and modern art. Of course, all of this is especially relevant to Syd because of her mother’s on-screen persona. The appealing narrator combined with the San Francisco beach setting, a charming romance, fast-paced danger, and disquieting concerns about the opposite sex make Deb Caletti’s Girl, Unframed an excellent choice for young readers this summer.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    The marketing oversells the thriller/mystery aspect because that's really not there at all. You know what's going to happen and how pretty early on, and frankly, I was rooting for it from the start. Caletti's latest book is about the ways girls are given messages about their bodies and roles socially. Are you a whore for wanting sex? Are you a prude for not enjoying the cat calls and crude gestures men make toward you? And what happens the moment you decide, as a young woman, to take agency for The marketing oversells the thriller/mystery aspect because that's really not there at all. You know what's going to happen and how pretty early on, and frankly, I was rooting for it from the start. Caletti's latest book is about the ways girls are given messages about their bodies and roles socially. Are you a whore for wanting sex? Are you a prude for not enjoying the cat calls and crude gestures men make toward you? And what happens the moment you decide, as a young woman, to take agency for your own sexuality? All of this plays out over the course of a summer where Sydney is forced to stay with her actress mother in a fancy, ocean-view home in the Bay area. Her mother has been through many men, most of whom have treated her terribly, but because of her own identification with a persona, as opposed to her true self, her mother is unable to break free from the curse of seeing relationships as something she's to be the submissive one in. It's Sydney seeing this dynamic play out that allows her to see her own worth -- and even if the means to free herself from those expectations isn't, er, legal, it's what she has to do to get out of this summer, to get out of being a 16-year-old girl who can either be a madonna or a whore, and to break free of the family curse. Compelling, engaging, and tightly written. The stylistic choice of being slightly removed from the immediacy of actions is a smart one, and I think it's partly why the marketing is irksome. This is told after the fact, so we know something big happened, and more, it's about understanding the motivations in needing to make those choices, as opposed to making those choices in the moment.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Mandina

    This story kept you hanging for a long time. Obviously there were hints at what was going on, but you didn’t get a lot filled in as you went along. And you had an idea what was going to happen based on the synopsis. Within the story there were a lot of good points made, either based on just the thoughts Sydney had as things happened to her, or even just through what happened itself. This is another book where the things that women have to deal with from men looking at them and that creepy feelin This story kept you hanging for a long time. Obviously there were hints at what was going on, but you didn’t get a lot filled in as you went along. And you had an idea what was going to happen based on the synopsis. Within the story there were a lot of good points made, either based on just the thoughts Sydney had as things happened to her, or even just through what happened itself. This is another book where the things that women have to deal with from men looking at them and that creepy feeling we get from men but aren’t sure of if we should feel that way are really pointed out. Also how it is her “purity” that is important, and all the things that really should be worried about, is she emotionally ready, does she want to, those aren’t the concerns the male trying to be a father figure worries about. This book had a kind of slow pace for me, and I feel that there could have been more actual things happening. I get that it had a lot of great messages, but I just wish there had been some more to the crime. We got little updates to witness testimonies or similar at the beginning of each chapter, but nothing other than the words, not what the actual testimonies or evidence was. I kind of wanted that if it was going to be pointed out. So while the story wasn’t bad, overall I wasn’t the biggest fan of it. I'd actually give it more of a 3.5 star rating than 4. Review first appeared on Lisa Loves Literature.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kate (GirlReading)

    A brilliant exploration of sexism, the patriarchy, toxic masculinity and the male gaze, told through the eyes of a teen discovering all that comes with being a woman for the first time. This was definitely more of a 'crap, why does the society work like this' coming-of-age story than the YA thriller promised but I'm not mad about it because who can be mad about a book that shines a light on the exhausting double standards and misogyny (both internal and external) society places upon women? This A brilliant exploration of sexism, the patriarchy, toxic masculinity and the male gaze, told through the eyes of a teen discovering all that comes with being a woman for the first time. This was definitely more of a 'crap, why does the society work like this' coming-of-age story than the YA thriller promised but I'm not mad about it because who can be mad about a book that shines a light on the exhausting double standards and misogyny (both internal and external) society places upon women? This wasn't an easy read but it was definitely an eye opening one and one I think will be very important for young teens. (Also there was an adorable pup, so that helped.) TW: sexual harassment, domestic abuse (emotional and physical)

  15. 5 out of 5

    Tasha

    Sydney is the daughter of the famous Lila Shore, an actress who did an iconic sex scene. Sydney lives most of the year in Seattle attending a private school, living in a dorm, and visiting her grandmother. But over the summer, Sydney heads to San Francisco to spend months with her mother, who never seems to actually have time to spend with Sydney. Lila lives in Jake’s house, dating him and staying for free. It’s a house near the beach with cliff views, a house that is often fogged in, a house fu Sydney is the daughter of the famous Lila Shore, an actress who did an iconic sex scene. Sydney lives most of the year in Seattle attending a private school, living in a dorm, and visiting her grandmother. But over the summer, Sydney heads to San Francisco to spend months with her mother, who never seems to actually have time to spend with Sydney. Lila lives in Jake’s house, dating him and staying for free. It’s a house near the beach with cliff views, a house that is often fogged in, a house full of secrets and violence. Jake pays a lot of attention to Sydney, as does a construction worker at a neighboring house. Sydney is creeped out by the sudden attention to what she is wearing, how she looks and innuendos about what she does. However, she doesn’t mind the attention from Nicco, a sweet boy she meets on the beach, who captures lines and moments from each day in his journal. As the summer goes on though, the tension grows towards a foreshadowed tragedy that is almost inevitable. In this slow burn of of thriller mystery, Caletti focuses on how unwanted male attention impacts teen girls, both in the way they act but even more importantly on the way they view themselves. With an even brighter light than our general society, Caletti uses the intensity of fame to capture society’s objectification of women and finding value in the physical rather than the internal. The book works on several levels with the thriller being steadily foreshadowed by the court documents listed at the beginning of each chapter. The mystery of what happened, the steadily build of tension, and the intensity of the revealing scene. It also works as a deep work of feminist literature, insisting that the reader notice what is going on, notice the impact that male attention has, and notice that something must be done to change this. An intense feminist novel for teens that insists on being noticed. Appropriate for ages 15-18.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Alex

    I did not like this book. That does not mean I didn't love what it was trying to do. Girl, Unframed wants to be a story about how men see and always have seen women of all ages. It wants to examine the double standard both women and men place upon women and girls. Sometimes it achieves both. The problem is, this commentary is marketed as part of one of the most boring mysteries of all time. Girl, Unframed follows our protagonist as she recounts the events leading up to a mysterious crime but the c I did not like this book. That does not mean I didn't love what it was trying to do. Girl, Unframed wants to be a story about how men see and always have seen women of all ages. It wants to examine the double standard both women and men place upon women and girls. Sometimes it achieves both. The problem is, this commentary is marketed as part of one of the most boring mysteries of all time. Girl, Unframed follows our protagonist as she recounts the events leading up to a mysterious crime but the crime isn't revealed until the last 10% of the book. Some books can do this beautifully, but Girl, Unframed spends more time on our character relations and their every day life than building up suspense. The reveal of the crime isn't a 'aha! so that's what all those clues were leading up to!" because the clues and build up aren't there. It's more 'well, I guess that's the crime. Cool.' Were Girl, Unframed not sold as a mystery/thriller would I have liked it more? Possibly. Our narrative voice in this story was something I also had trouble buying into but there wasn't anything inherently wrong about it. Maybe read this if you want a look at how society treats women, but Girl, Unframed is pretty heavy handed with its commentary and I honestly think even this books best scenes can be found better communicated in other more interesting books.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Deb Caletti blew me away with her last book, A Heart in a Body in the World. She returns with Girl, Unframed exploring a lot of the same topics, but in a new, thrilling way. Girl, Unframed follows Sydney Reilly as she spends the summer with her famous actress mother. Before she even arrives in San Francisco, Sydney has a bad feeling about the visit. Her feeling proves justified as she meets her mom's leering, dangerous boyfriend, deals with the harassment from the construction worker next door, Deb Caletti blew me away with her last book, A Heart in a Body in the World. She returns with Girl, Unframed exploring a lot of the same topics, but in a new, thrilling way. Girl, Unframed follows Sydney Reilly as she spends the summer with her famous actress mother. Before she even arrives in San Francisco, Sydney has a bad feeling about the visit. Her feeling proves justified as she meets her mom's leering, dangerous boyfriend, deals with the harassment from the construction worker next door, and confronts loneliness and anxiety of the entire situation by herself. The book teases out a crime and each chapter starts with evidence presented in the trial for whatever the crime is. Slowly we realize where the ending is going, but you are still left with one last twist. You feel anxious with Sydney, you feel lonely with her. Caletti is great at making you feel like one with the character. But the strongest part of Girl, Unframed is the exploration of being a woman in society. Sydney is 16 years old and is starting to get a lot of unwanted attention. This is offset by her aging actress mother who is trying to do everything she can to stay relevant and desirable. Caletti subtly shows how women are treated in the world and how men and others try to control and dominate. A lot of Girl, Unframed felt familiar to A Heart in a Body in the World, especially in the story of a teen girl coming to terms with what it means to be a woman and the good and bad that comes with it. Yet, Girl, Unframed still takes a unique approach and shows this same theme in a different light. Highly recommended. **eARC was provided by Netgalley**

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amber Reifsneider

    I received this eARC through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. Sydney loves her life at school in Seattle, she has an awesome group of friends that she enjoys spending time with as well as her grandmother. But, she flies to LA to spend the summer with her mother who is a “washed up” actress who is very self-centered, naive, and honestly, an absentee parent. However, when she leaves the plane she isn't met by her mother, but rather her mother's boyfriend, Jake. Jake is supposedly a real I received this eARC through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. Sydney loves her life at school in Seattle, she has an awesome group of friends that she enjoys spending time with as well as her grandmother. But, she flies to LA to spend the summer with her mother who is a “washed up” actress who is very self-centered, naive, and honestly, an absentee parent. However, when she leaves the plane she isn't met by her mother, but rather her mother's boyfriend, Jake. Jake is supposedly a real estate agent and an art dealer, but there are many things about Jake that Sydney “Syd” just doesn’t like. He doesn’t treat her or her mom the way she feels they should be treated and he really makes her uncomfortable. Sydney also begins to find herself and her voice in many ways throughout the novel whether it is through her relationship with the nice young man, Nicco that she meets or whether it is learning to stand up to her mother and Jake. Personal opinion: Honestly, this book tried to cover so many things, domestic violence/abuse, a girl finding her voice and working her way into becoming a woman, etc. I personally felt that this book fell flat when it came to being a “thriller”. The mystery/thriller part of the book was kept a mystery until about 93% of the way through the book which was really frustrating to me and did not really make me want to continue reading. I also felt like the mystery in the end was then rushed and not really shown in as much detail as the rest of the entire book.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ashley Lynne

    Warning for if you’re triggered by domestic violence, aggressive men, forced violent patriarchy This book was incredible but hit a little too close to home. I definitely agree with a review I saw where someone said you’ll like this book if you like “Sadie” by Courtney Summers. Very similar! The social commentary in this book made me ache. The way the main character felt the need to comply and be quiet and nice in moments where she felt incredibly uncomfortable and unsafe. Yep. Sounds familiar. Wom Warning for if you’re triggered by domestic violence, aggressive men, forced violent patriarchy This book was incredible but hit a little too close to home. I definitely agree with a review I saw where someone said you’ll like this book if you like “Sadie” by Courtney Summers. Very similar! The social commentary in this book made me ache. The way the main character felt the need to comply and be quiet and nice in moments where she felt incredibly uncomfortable and unsafe. Yep. Sounds familiar. Women are fucking CONDITIONED to be that way. You can’t tell a creepy guy you don’t want a hug cuz you’re being a bitch and you don’t wanna come across as rude, even to a gross creepy guy. We are TAUGHT THAT! I read something earlier online today that said “I was hit on by grown men more as a preteen than I am as an adult woman” and this book displays how gross grown men get away with being. This book is sooooo important!!!! My spoiler section: I really think the author was trying to make the reader think the story was building up to Jake being arrested for being an art thief, but I could kinda tell it was leading to him (or someone, at least) being killed. Maybe it’s just because I’d already seen the “Sadie” comparison.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Sydney wished that she could just spend the summer in in Seattle, the place she called home with her Edwina and her friends. Instead she reluctantly goes to spend the summer with her mother, Lila Shore-yes, that Lila Shore-the beautiful, self absorbed actress Lila Shore. Except it’s not Lila that picks her up from the airport but her new boyfriend Jake. Syd has a funny feeling about him and rightfully so, as he displays his bizarre art collection openly in their home. Syd avoids Jake and his gro Sydney wished that she could just spend the summer in in Seattle, the place she called home with her Edwina and her friends. Instead she reluctantly goes to spend the summer with her mother, Lila Shore-yes, that Lila Shore-the beautiful, self absorbed actress Lila Shore. Except it’s not Lila that picks her up from the airport but her new boyfriend Jake. Syd has a funny feeling about him and rightfully so, as he displays his bizarre art collection openly in their home. Syd avoids Jake and his growing temper and falls head over heels with Nico, a local, instead and it’s everything that she’s ever wanted, to be wanted by a boy like her mother, the object used by many different men before and well after Sydney’s father. Sydney can’t ignore the storm brewing around her forever though, can she stop it before it consumes her? (There’s also a cute dog too!) Thanks to Libro.fm’s Advanced Listening Copy program for Educators and Librarians for this free audiobook in exchange for a review.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sara Alcorn-Luparello

    This was deeply unsettling in all the right ways. If you’re a woman this will get right up in those memories you’ve tried to push away about men and our society. But maybe we shouldn’t be pushing those away. Caletti makes the argument through Girl, Unframed that we have to stop pushing them away and start pushing back against them. Captivating and edge-of-your-seat intoxicating, this little novel packs a thrilling punch about what it’s really like becoming a woman.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Clay

    Young adult feminist thriller. Recommended.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    review to come!

  24. 4 out of 5

    theresa

    ACR:4.5/5✨ deb caletti always hits differently

  25. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    I wish I had more teen novels like this when I was in high school. Mature teen girls will love this book.

  26. 4 out of 5

    L. B. Bugle

    I didn’t like it that much, sadly. It was just... gross. I don’t know what else to say. It was definitely interesting, but I didn’t really like it.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Brooke Nadzam

    I got a copy of this book from Edelweiss for an impartial review. Really good! I don’t want to spoil the format, but there is creepy, there is sexism, there is a love-interest. There’s murder. And nothing is given away too quickly. It just bubbles and boils.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Savannah

    TW: Open talk about sex, sexual harassment and assault This one was very disappointing. I don't know what I was hoping for, but this was not it. I was more annoyed than anything else. Pros: - Great rhetoric and snippets about feminism as a teenager - The plot was fast-paced, which is the only reason I didn't DNF it. - Casual LGBTQ rep, but I can't determine if it's performative or not. Cons: - The main character is insufferable, which I feel awful because she's going through it, but she is a spoiled TW: Open talk about sex, sexual harassment and assault This one was very disappointing. I don't know what I was hoping for, but this was not it. I was more annoyed than anything else. Pros: - Great rhetoric and snippets about feminism as a teenager - The plot was fast-paced, which is the only reason I didn't DNF it. - Casual LGBTQ rep, but I can't determine if it's performative or not. Cons: - The main character is insufferable, which I feel awful because she's going through it, but she is a spoiled brat who has no idea how to handle anything. There's making mistakes, and then there's making mistakes with no regard for the other people in her life, especially her friends. - The love interest is so attractive but so ridiculous. If this was supposed to be a show of how straight men can be supportive and not-toxic, this was not the way to do it. He was an arm piece and I wish that he was not redeemed at all. This was one of the most important conversations that should have happened in this book. Young girls need to know that they can talk about sex with their partners and ask for things, but the main character just deals with unpleasureable sex and it reads as an obligation or something that she owes him, which is the story for MANY young women and no one is talking about it because society still sees that as making you a slut. So I don't understand why the author did not address this, and it was harmful to her empowering message. - You don't turn 16 and suddenly there's a swarm of men around, wanting you. You don't suddenly notice men checking you out once you turn 16. My mom pointed it out at 14 for me. That comes at puberty, and puberty doesn't have a timer. It also makes it seem like being harassed previously is a prerequisite for assault. It would have been a great book if this was spread out over years and years. In conclusion, I believe this book did more to harm the message of empowering young women sexually, and it was very disappointing.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Carole

    An excellent book for parents to read if they have a daughter in middle school. It let's you peek into the mind of a girl and how she feels about suddenly being "noticed" by the opposite sex.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Carol Youssif

    I've been mulling over the idea of including this title in the middle school library I work at. There is SO much that is unpacked in this book about being a girl/woman, how there's a blurry line between wanting to be attractive and how that can also turn into something ugly. When men/boys pay attention to you in *that way, is that something that you should welcome? Should you be polite even if someone is doing something that bothers you? What if standing up to them means potentially putting your I've been mulling over the idea of including this title in the middle school library I work at. There is SO much that is unpacked in this book about being a girl/woman, how there's a blurry line between wanting to be attractive and how that can also turn into something ugly. When men/boys pay attention to you in *that way, is that something that you should welcome? Should you be polite even if someone is doing something that bothers you? What if standing up to them means potentially putting yourself at risk? In retrospect, I wish I had read this book as a younger woman. The duality and often confusing nature of growing up as a girl is just as complex as this book describes, with obviously MANY layers that are not discussed in this story. Should prepubescent, soon-to-be-women girls know about this burden? Should we warn them? Should we shelter them? I need to think about this some more.

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