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The Girl Who Never Was by Skylar Dorset - Review by Ashlee, Staff Blogger

The Girl Who Never Was - book cover

In this young adult fantasy novel, The Girl Who Never Was, Selkie Stewart thinks she’s a normal Boston teenager being raised by her eccentric aunts because her father is in a mental institution and her mother abandoned her on the doorstep when she was a baby. When she turns seventeen and goes searching for her long-lost mother, though, things really start getting weird, and Selkie discovers her connection to a magical world of faeries, ogres, wizards, and the dreaded Seelie Court. And meanwhile, there’s a very special boy in her life…

This one took me a couple of chapters to sink into it—a bit too much Bostonian history at the beginning, as well as Selkie’s understandable confusion about the faerie world and frustration that no one would answer her questions. But once it got going, I was so hooked, and it’s partially because of the fun, deceptively straightforward world-building, but mostly, it's because of the two wonderful leads.

It’s great to see the narrator, Selkie, evolve throughout the story. While at the beginning she’s naturally bewildered and lost, once she gets her bearings, she’s brave, resilient, and determined—and delightfully stubborn, a particularly magical trait of hers (as you will see!).

And then there’s Ben, who’s just swoon-worthy: attractive but so vulnerable and with lots of secrets. I fell in love with him pretty much instantly and loved him more with every scene. My favorite part is how the book starts off with him protecting her but then quickly moves to her doing her best to rescue him. Their touching loyalty to one another is what really drives this novel.

The sequel, The Boy with the Hidden Name, is expected to be published in December, and I really can’t wait!


Staff Blogger



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