Publish Date: September 2nd, 2014
Publisher: Atheneum Books For Young Readers
Source: ARC from publisher for honest review
In the tradition of High Fidelity and Empire Records, this is the literary soundtrack to Skylark Martin's strange, mysterious, and extraordinary summer.
This is the story of a wild girl and a ghost girl; a boy who knew nothing and a boy who thought he knew everything.
It's a story about Skylark Martin, who lives with her father and brother in a vintage record shop and is trying to find her place in the world. It's about ten-year-old Super Agent Gully and his case of a lifetime. And about beautiful, reckless, sharp-as-knives Nancy. It's about tragi-hot Luke, and just-plain-tragic Mia Casey. It's about the dark underbelly of a curious neighborhood. It's about summer, and weirdness, and mystery, and music.
And it's about life and death and grief and romance. All the good stuff.
Let's be honest here, for the first half of the book I thought I was reading a book called "Girl Detective" and while there is ironically detective work throughout the novel, something just wasn't sitting right for me. It wasn't until I finally realized that I had the wrong name the whole time that I finally got into the book and read it for what it was. And it was fantastic!! The story, the characters - oh the characters!! - everything was perfectly executed in this brilliantly written novel that read like "Perks of Being a Wallflower". That's what I would picture while reading Girl Defective. I was highly reminded of Stephen Chbosky's masterpiece. That and Empire Records, which is just as cool.
Skylar, her brother Gully and their dad own a record store. The mother left them to pursue her rock-star career so it's been the 3 of them since. While her life isn't extraordinary, it's anything but ordinary. Gully or Agent Seagull Martin is a detective (hence why I was convinced of the wrong title!) and he is out to save the world from your "brickers", "snouters", and other petty criminals. I really liked Gully, there was something about him that really stuck with me. His kindness towards everyone, his fun personality. He was definitely my favourite character. Skylar was likable too. She's just a young girl trying to get through life the best she can with what she has. She's funny and loves her brother even with all his quirks. Nancy, Skylars older, more experienced (in everything) friend is a force to be reckoned with. She was up and down and all over the place but played a huge part in the whole awesomeness of the book.
There's not much I can say about the book really, just that it was great! It's one of the books that you'll have to read yourself, and it will sit on your shelf after you read it for the first time and in a few years you will pick it back up and read it in one sitting (just like Perks), It's that kind of book! I also loved that in my ARC, there was a note from Vice President, Publisher for Atheneum Books, Margaret K. McElderry books and S&S books that said " This book is FAR cooler than I will ever be! I hope you enjoy."
That just about says it all!