Series: Girl Online #1
Published by Simon and Schuster on August 30th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Love & Romance, Social Themes, New Experience, Dating & Relationships
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From award-winning YouTube sensation Zoe Sugg, popularly known as Zoella, comes her New York Times bestselling debut young adult novel, which perfectly captures what it means to grow up and fall in love in today’s digital world.
I have this dream that, secretly, all teenage girls feel exactly like me. And maybe one day, when we realize that we all feel the same, we can all stop pretending we’re something we’re not… But until that day, I’m going to keep it real on this blog and keep it unreal in real life.
Penny has a secret.
Under the alias GirlOnline, Penny blogs her hidden feelings about friendship, boys, high school drama, her crazy family, and the panic attacks that have begun to take over her life. When things go from bad to worse at school, her parents accept an opportunity to whisk the family away for Christmas at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City. There, Penny meets Noah, a gorgeous, guitar-strumming American. Suddenly she is falling in love—and capturing every moment she spends with "Brooklyn Boy" on her blog.
But Noah has a secret, too, one that threatens to ruin Penny’s cover—and her closest friendship—forever.
So confession: It’s taken me a while to finally read Zoella’s debut novel – duh, you’re reading this review now, but I do this a lot: I get really, really excited for a book, buy it as soon as it’s released, and then it sits on my shelf for ages and ages. I still have books on my TBR shelf from 2009, so you know, what do you expect? But I’ve been so excited to read Girl Online, despite all the controversy (sure I was peeved about the whole ghost-writer thing, but I don’t care any more – it is what it is, and I loved this book no matter who wrote it). But! With the news of Girl Online 3 on the way (I am ridiculously excited for Girl Online 3) I decided it was *finally* time to read Girl Online, and this was such a cute read!
To be honest, it took me a while to get into Girl Online. At first I was kind of a bit “meh” about it all, but the more I read, the more I got into it, and by the end I was just head over heels in love with it – with Penny & Noah, with Elliott, with Penny’s blog, with the writing, I felt like it really hit its stride the more it went on, and here’s hoping that continues in Girl Online: On Tour. It’s just the kind of book that gets better and better, and you get so sucked in to Penny’s world that you don’t want to leave, and I didn’t! I wanted to stay in Penny’s world, because yes, she’s a bit clumsy, but she was so real, and I loved that she fantasised about boys coming to ask her out on a date, and kissing her, because isn’t that EXACTLY what your teenage years are all about? Sigh. And there’s nothing wrong with unicorn knickers, OKAY?
The whole New York thing just seemed like the most amazing dream come true! And Noah was so sweet. I love the dreamy boys, who just seem so perfect; in fact the only thing that would have made Noah better was if he read books, because NOT MANY BOYS READ BOOKS. And that’s like the dream. Why do no boys read books? Honestly. But, apart from that, Noah was honestly amazing. The way he made Penny feel just made me so happy. Because for everything Penny goes through, she deserves someone like Noah, and when the big secret was revealed I was so devastated, because it was like it had shattered my dreams.
I genuinely loved Girl Online. I don’t go in for celebrity reads much, and I’m not even a big YouTube fan, quite frankly, though I do like both Zoe and Alfie’s channels but that’s about it, and I’m so glad Girl Online didn’t disappoint me, in fact it was a lot of fun, and I’m so ready for Girl Online: On Tour, for more Penny and Noah fun, and for more Elliott! He’s the perfect BFF, and if she ever wanted to write a spin-off, I’d read an Elliott story for sure.