“No one sees me. I’m invisible.”
-Sarah Carroll, The Girl in Between
Hey guys! Not too long ago, I was lucky to receive an ARC of The Girl in Between by Sarah Carroll (thank you Simon & Schuster!), which has just come out in the UK.
Set in Ireland, a girl and her mother are living in an old, abandoned mill they’ve dubbed the “castle”. The novel is narrated by the startlingly unique voice of a homeless girl, whose mother is protecting her from the world, in particular, “the authorities”, who will take her away from her mother if they see her. They are safe in their castle, but with developers beginning to show up, that fragile security is about to be threatened, leaving the girl to seek out answers from Caretaker-the old man who’s slept outside the mill for longer than she can remember. He is haunted by ghosts of his past, leaving the girl to puzzle through and explore what other ghosts are haunting both the mill and her mother.
This was a really fast read and easy to get in-the type of book that you could read in one sitting! It’s a debut YA book and it is both moving and haunting with a twist that I never saw coming! I haven’t read many books at all that deal with homelessness, and this one dealt with the subject matter so poignantly and well. It is definitely the type of book that can teach you something, and it will most definitely move you. The voice of the girl narrating the book is strong and carries the events of the plot along nicely.
The story of the girl and her mother unfolds as the girl narrates both their current lives in the mill, as well as little flashback chapters where we see what has happened to them both earlier on. This juxtaposition was cleverly done, revealing the path that led mother and daughter to being homeless, as well as things that have gone wrong in their lives, and at the last minute, towards the end of the book, we learn something unforgettable. Sarah Carroll stands out as a good writer that has crafted her story well.
It interested me and it was definitely thought-provoking, but it wasn’t my type of book, personally, so I’m giving it 3.5/5 stars. That said, it’s a lovely little read that will appeal to a lot of people, so if you enjoy contemporary YAs that deal with bigger issues, like A Monster Calls, then you should check out The Girl In Between!
Has anyone else read this one? What did you think of it?