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Such a Pretty Girl

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  15,190 ratings  ·  1,239 reviews
They promised Meredith nine years of safety, but only gave her three. Her father was supposed to be locked up until Meredith turned eighteen. She thought she had time to grow up, get out, and start a new life. But Meredith is only fifteen, and today her father is coming home from prison. Today her time has run out.
Paperback, 212 pages
Published January 2nd 2007 by MTV Books and Pocket Books
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Paige Bookdragon I think 15 years and above is appropriate. But if a 12-14 years old is mature enough to understand this, then it's okay. This one is a bit dark and he…moreI think 15 years and above is appropriate. But if a 12-14 years old is mature enough to understand this, then it's okay. This one is a bit dark and heavy to tackle.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.88  · 
Rating details
 ·  15,190 ratings  ·  1,239 reviews


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Jamie L
Jul 16, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kelsie
Nov 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
Although this book deals with a dark and demented issue, its style, readability, and theme of justice made it impossible for me to put down. Meredith, a 15-year-old girl, was promised nine years of protection from the government when her father was charged with molesting and raping her when she was 12 years old. Her father was sent to prison and was supposed to be locked up until Meredith was 18 and legally free from her father's guardianship. But to Meredith's horror, he is released after only ...more
Laura
Jul 11, 2008 rated it it was ok
12-year-old Meredith's father is sent to prison for nine years for raping her repeatedly. But he's paroled in only three, when Meredith is 15, and, because Meredith's selfish, narcissistic mother wants her husband back, he sets about working his way back into Meredith's life and continuing where he left off.

Let's just get one thing out of the way: this book requires an enormous suspension of disbelief, at least if you have even the most tangential contact with the real justice system. First of a
...more
Sarah
Feb 01, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, ya, z2017
3.5 stars

This book was an average read. I kind of wish it was longer and meatier but I can understand why it was on the short side. Honestly though, How It Ends by Wiess is so much better than this one so I would recommend that one over this one.

The best thing about this book was Meredith. I thought she was a great character. I liked how she was brave and quite rebellious even though she was scared of her father. The other characters all seemed pretty real so in my opinion, they were well done.
...more
Penelope Douglas
Wonderfully written story. A little pricey for being so short--I wish it was longer--but I loved the way things were described and the twist at the very end.
Paige  Bookdragon
“Rape is not a mistake! He did it on purpose, over and over again because he wanted to, because he get off on it-”


There are just some books that despite not liking the characterization, you love the book because the story it is telling is important.

This book is about a motherfucking pedophile who was supposed to be rotting in jail for nine years (not enough). He was Merideth's father and because the universe is a bitch sometimes, her father was released after three years in prison.Let me be str
...more
Angie
May 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
SUCH A PRETTY GIRL has only been out for three and a half years now, but I kind of get the impression that--similar to Julia Hoban's Willow--it hasn't reached the wider audience it deserves as a result of its somewhat disturbing subject matter. I know I held off picking it up for awhile. Well, make that several days. I would have gone longer, I'm sure, but I read two absolutely stellar reviews of it and wanted to try it so bad. However, I have a very hard time reading stories about child abuse. ...more
Diane ϟ [ Lestrange ]
What's the point of obsessing over cholesterol or bike helmets or even cigarettes when the biggest threats to our children are being released back into society every day? Yes, maybe 'some' of them have reformed, but what about the ones who haven't? Doesn't anyone realize that one 'touch', one 'time' will destroy a child's life ten times faster than a pack-a-day habit?


Such a Pretty Girl was disturbing and a very painful subject. The kind that makes one uncomfortable, as it should be. It is si
...more
Susan's Reviews
Feb 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was cruising around for a good YA novel when I cam across this one, ordered it on Overdrive, and surprise, surprise, discovered that I had already read it years ago. This story is about abuse, parental abdication and one girl's battle to stop the abuse by her father.
I loved the magical overtones and the poetic justice of the ending.
Highly recommended!
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Jocelyn Pearce for TeensReadToo.com

In SUCH A PRETTY GIRL, Laura Wiess grabbed and held my attention from the first page to the last. New Jersey teenager Meredith was supposed to have nine years of safety from her father, so she'd be eighteen and out of the house when he was released from prison. But three years later, when Meredith is fifteen, her father gets out for good behavior. No matter what he did to Meredith and to other children before her, Meredith's mother is more than read
...more
Patrick
Dec 09, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mock-printz-2007
I'll start by saying that I was struck by the similarities between this novel and my spring 2007 book Chasing Tail Lights). The journey, the choices, the use of flashbacks, and the two main characters making similar cold blooded and calculated decisions on avenging their abuse. Yet, I was most struck by the middle section of this novel where Mer talks about what is supposed to happen to "girls like me" who have been abused. The book is loaded with creepy moments (the father touching Mer's back a ...more
Adriana
This story revolves around Meredith, a 15 year old whose father sexually abused her and has just been released early after serving only 3 years of his 9 year sentence. Her mother turns the other way and is in major denial over the whole thing, and Meredith feels like she has to deal with it mainly on her own. However, she does have allies in her condo community, like her retired cop neighbor, her wheelchair bound boyfriend and his mother, and her grandmother (who happens to be the mayor). She fe ...more
Michelle Llewellyn
Oct 28, 2013 rated it did not like it
What a stupid story! Yes, the author is trying to deal with a heavy issue like child incest and pedophiles but the world she's created here is just too unbelievable. The main character, Meredith, age 15, just can't seem to focus on anything except getting away from her sadistic parents and their bad sex to be with her crippled boyfriend, Andy, so they can have the good sex and drink the good booze. Hanging out of a car window while drunk was what led to Andy's paralysis yet he's constantly swigg ...more
Rebecca McNutt
Apr 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Really well-written, yet disturbing, eye-opening and haunting. Books like these ones always creep me out more than any horror film could, because cases like these happen in reality all the time, it's horrible that the world is filled with twisted people like the father in this book.:(
Sarah
May 01, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
This book is raw and painful, and although it hurt to read it, I couldn't put it down. After being sent to prison for raping his 12-year-old daughter Meredith and other children, Meredith's father is released. She was promised a sentence of nine years but he's home in three and back to the same abuse. Meredith, is now fifteen and she's losing it.

The characters were all incredibly well-drawn, especially Meredith, but also the supporting characters. (I hate, hate, hate Meredith's mother.) There w
...more
Kelsey
Aug 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
What an amazingly heartbreaking and amazing story. These kinds of stories break my heart. As a mother, this story tore my apart. I was sicked and in such disbelief at the behavior of BOTH parents. ESPECIALLY the mother. For a mother to let her child be abused....and then bring the monster back into the house...I just can't even imagine.

I really liked the ending! Justice was served, even though not soon enough, and there was as happy as an ending as the mc could get.
Katyh
Mar 07, 2011 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Paulina
This book was tragically beautiful. I can’t think of a better book to bring on holiday…
Meredith thought she had time, time to grow up, time to get away from him. Meredith is only 15 when her father gets out early from prison and is coming for her. Her time run out and she needs to stop him.
I am going through this phase in my life where I’m not interested in books that don’t include; suicide, or mental illnesses or rape. Weird I know but I love seeing how an author follows a story, I love seein
...more
faith
Dec 15, 2015 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book, I really did, but I just had some major problems with it. I thought it was going to be similar to Perks, and in was in some ways, but it definitely didn't handle the topic of molestation as gracefully as Perks did.
The main thing that put me off about this book straight from the start was the fact that Meredith is dating Andy and Andy is 19 years old while she is 15. In my opinion, the was no reason for Andy to be 19, he could have easily been 17 or something and the
...more
Azka
Jul 16, 2014 rated it liked it
I know this book deserves more than 3 stars and i would definitely have given it more had i not read "How It Ends" before this one. The latter one had me sobbing so bad. So when i picked this book I had hoped that i would blow me away. But that didn't happen. In fact the ending happened quite abruptly.

Laura Weiss has expertly described the emotions of teenagers who have have been sexually abused and didn't exactly find justice for it. Meredith was abused by her father who is a pedophile. Three
...more
Nicole Gerritsen (nicolesbundleofbooks)
I am gonna keep this sort and sweet. I am a social worker. I work with childhood sexual abuse everyday with the youth I take care of. This book does a horrible job at telling the truth.

The two positives I can give the book is 1) the mom's personality is pretty spot on and 2) Meridiths OCD with numbers is pretty spot on as well.

I have to many bad things to complain about that I will keep them to myself and not ruin the book for others. Just know that this doesn't give the full and accurate pict
...more
Talon
Dec 24, 2017 rated it it was ok
A lot of things really irked me about this book. Not the subject matter, though. No, it was more than that for me. My first problem started with one of the main characters. Meredith’s mother.

What in the ever loving hell is wrong with this mother? How could she be so inconsiderate, selfish, and dense? Is this a typical thing? I really hope not. As a mother, this is something I cannot stand for. Neglect. That’s how I see this whole thing. The ending of the book have the mother just what she had c
...more
Anna
Aug 30, 2019 rated it liked it
good for distracting yourself from how long it takes to drive from halifax to moncton, not so great for quality literature
Juushika
Sep 11, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: status-borrowed
She was promised nine years of safety, but received only three: Meridith is fifteen, living with a mother who intentionally blinds herself to the truth, and her sexually abusive father is about to be released from jail. She must find a way to protect herself from her father—and protect the other children that he may abuse in her stead. Meridith's harrowing story is compulsively readable, but it's too short and the secondary characters and plotlines don't receive enough attention. Careful flashba ...more
Lori
Jan 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I’ve had Such a Pretty Girl on my to read list for years. Everyone has amazing things to say about it so I don’t know why I put it off for so long exactly. I picked it up on a whim the other day and devoured it.

Such a Pretty Girl is a difficult book. The subject matter is something that a lot of people wouldn’t want to read about. I’ve always liked dark books. Books that make me step outside of my normal life. That’s definitely what this one is. Meredith has been sexually abused by her father in
...more
Tez
Jun 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a Pretty Girl depicts a community where the tension doesn't simmer; it's explosive. The only way to protect the community is to provoke the offender into re-offending, and Meredith offers herself up as the sacrificial lamb. She's in no way reluctant, though she must battle her fears to complete the task.

The romance is believable: victims, survivors banding together, trying to cope with their tortured pasts...and now their troubled present. Paralysis and religion thread their connection with
...more
Deanna
Apr 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read this book about five years ago but it had quite an impact on me and has stayed with me all these years. Such a pretty girl grabbed my attention from the first page and kept it until the very end. A short read that I was able to finish in one sitting.

A well written and moving novel. The many difficult subjects it covers makes it an extremely emotional read. The characters are very well developed and most are very realistic. Meredith is compelling, and her struggle so horrible yet she is a
...more
Sydney (sydneysshelves) West
I loved this book. It's real life. Gritty, hard, broken, betrayed, and real.
billie
Jan 31, 2017 rated it it was ok
trigger warning: molestation, rape, sexual assault, pedophilia, incest

wow I read some pretty dark books...
Jessica White
Apr 26, 2017 rated it it was ok
Meredith thought she had 9 years of freedom from her abuse father... but the system only gave her 3 years. In those 3 little years, she never got over the abuse suffered by the hands of her father. She never forgot the emotional damage. She'll never forget that little gold baseball slapping against her skin throughout the entirety of the sexual abuse. However, she found close friends she could trust and confide in. She found Andy, a boy who was also abused by Meredith's father. She found a women ...more
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Such A Pretty Girl: About Book 1 6 Mar 21, 2017 10:53AM  
Crazy for Young A...: Such a Pretty Girl by Laura Wiess → Start Date: November 14, 2014 13 35 Nov 17, 2014 06:53PM  

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Laura Wiess is the author of the critically acclaimed novels Such a Pretty Girl, chosen as one of the ALA’s 2008 Best Books for Young Adults and 2008 YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers, and Leftovers. Originally from Milltown, New Jersey, she traded bumper-to-bumper traffic, excellent pizza, and summer days down the shore for scenic roads, bears, no pizza delivery, and the irresistible allure ...more

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The must-read summer beach book is a kind of American tradition. The crash of the waves. The glare of the sun. The sand in the pages. Is t...
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“The ache starts in my chest and spreads through my veins. The abuse I can handle; it's the happiness that cripples.” 49 likes
“We wait to be rescued, but for whatever reason, no one comes. We figure that if no one protects us then we must not be worth protecting so we become prey and are easily picked off. Our wounded, kicked-puppy gazes attract sly predators and we sell ourselves for clearance sale prices, mistaking screwing for caring.” 44 likes
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