books, Reviews

The Reviewing Reel: Girl Online


Well, this book was… interesting.

Let me explain, before people accuse me of ‘judging a book by its cover’ and ‘being unfairly biased against a YouTuber I dislike for no particular reason’. I have no problem with the author herself – who, for those of you who are unaware, is the insanely popular beauty vlogger Zoella. She makes quite nice videos, her voice isn’t too annoying and I follow her blog.

A big thing at the moment is for YouTubers to be writing books, and Zoella is obviously among this group. She’s actually written three books, which is pretty damn good for her. She says it herself on the back of Girl Online – it’s been her dream to write a novel.

There are a few major problems with this book – first of all, that none of the characters were particularly interesting, and they all seemed to claim stereotypes. Mainly, the lead character, Penny, who is everyone’s favourite nerd girl with a crush on a guy. Penny’s best friend, who seems to have two functions (which are to be gay and to tell Penny when she’s being a twat).

Also, the love interest(s). The first, a really horrible guy from Penny’s school, who should smell like terrible from a mile away. The second, Noah, a musician from New York, who turns out to be pretty famous. Except not in England, for convenience’s sake.

That didn’t sit right with me – Noah seems to be really famous over in the states, judging by his very famous… Well, as I can’t seem to write detailed reviews without spoilers, by his very famous ‘not really girlfriend’. So how has nobody heard of him? That just frustrated me.

It’s been in the news that Zoe Sugg didn’t write the book entirely on her own – which is fine, if you consider how many other projects she undertakes. The idea was hers and nobody else made it up for her, it’s something she’s wanted to write and to do. I won’t begrudge her that.

I still don’t like this book though, mainly because I think I’m a little too old for the series, and it’s not something I grew up with, so it’s hard for me to get into. I see why people younger than me would enjoy it – I’m going to recommend it to my sister, as it’s the kind of thing she’ll like reading. But I won’t be going out of my way to read the rest of the series.

So, overall… 2/5. Because I’m fussy, and I won’t ever go back to this book. I read it, discovered that most of the hype around it was manufactured by a rabid fanbase (don’t kill me pls), and moved on with my life.

Zoella does make some really great haul videos, though, before you brand me. It almost makes me motivated to get a job.




Also she really doesn’t need much more publicity, here is Zoe Sugg’s YouTube channel, and she is on Twitter @Zoella



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