Skip to main content

Scar Girl

Review

Scar Girl

SCAR BOY’s long-awaited sequel has finally arrived, and I am more than satisfied! SCAR BOYS, which was even approved by Peter Buck of R.E.M., focused more on Harry “Harbinger” Jones and his punk band. SCAR GIRL, however, picks up where SCAR BOY left off, in the late 1980s punk scene when the Scar Boys finally get their first record.
 
SCAR GIRL deals with the complexities of friendship and a rise to stardom the band was maybe not ready to really deal with.  Vlahos portrays these characters as ordinary people experiencing and living in not-so-ordinary conditions.

"This was a great book that I recommend reading if you are interested in a realistic, heartbreaking, yet lovable story of four band members living their dreams..."

I would like to start off by saying that I was a huge fan of SCAR BOYS; I felt that the plotline was well developed, and the characters were both charming and, in a odd way since I am in no way in the punk scene, relatable and brutally honest. SCAR GIRL makes me feel the same exact way.
 
This novel is a bit different structurally from its predecessor since this one is formatted as a long and personal interview. The stories of each one of the characters are not told through a regular plot, but through an interview. I also enjoyed that the interviewer remained anonymous, it left the identity of the interviewer open-ended; while one could view the interviewer as himself or herself or, perhaps, Johnny.  I also think that having the novel written this way helped with the fluidity of the plot while deepening my understanding of Cheyenne, Harbinger, and Richie’s relationship.
 
I got really attached to Cheyenne’s character; I feel like after reading this installment of the series, I both understand and have a deeper knowledge of the terrible things she had to go through. Without giving any spoilers, I can definitely say that she was by far the strongest out of the four band members, and I admire her a lot.  Richie was also a nice character; he was always giving the most entertaining stories to remind me of the actual interview-style atmosphere of the book. It was a nice contrast between the serious stories given by Cheyenne and Richie’s light-hearted comments.
 
It was a bit difficult though, to navigate through the several punk references the Vlahos made at certain points of the novel. Although I did look some of them up and I realize this book is targeted towards a demographic that understands the references themselves, I found that it took away some of the enjoyment of reading --- at least for the average reader.  
 
Nevertheless, this was a great book that I recommend reading if you are interested in a realistic, heartbreaking, yet lovable story of four band members living their dreams, and explaining everything they had to go through to achieve them.

Reviewed by Rachel D., Teen Board Member on April 7, 2016

Scar Girl
by Len Vlahos