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Birthday Girl

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3.33  ·  Rating details ·  55 ratings  ·  33 reviews
When sixteen-year-old Tracey Burns finds herself lost and alone on the side of the California highway, she has no way to know it's the beginning of a her new life. Mixing determination, courage, and autistic superpowers, Tracey takes on a unforgiving and confusing world in a quest to find her missing mother and get to a place called home.
Paperback, 337 pages
Published November 8th 2008 by Seedpod Publishing
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Average rating 3.33  · 
Rating details
 ·  55 ratings  ·  33 reviews


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Dawn
Dec 27, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I received Birthday Girl from a Goodreads giveaway and really enjoyed it.

I had a hard time understanding how Tracey could still be so naive after all that she had been through, but reminded myself Birthday Girl is a novel, not a memoir. Also, the seclusion she endured could have put her a little behind in her emotional development. The third-person narration threw me off a little bit at first, but it was very easy to get used to. Plus, I think it drove home the point that Tracey was living as a
...more
Jenni
Mar 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received an e-book edition of this book from the publisher after not winning a first reads giveaway. I am very glad I have gotten to read this book!
Tracey is a neglected and abused teenager who unfortunately, due to those experiences is extremely naive and doesn't really know much about the "real world". When she runs away from her father's house in the beginning she is getting herself into a new life which ends in great emotional growth for her. She hits a lot of pot holes along the way, but
...more
Eva Leger
Dec 31, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone and everyone
Recommended to Eva by: won on FirstReads
Five stars all the way!! I have been so lucky with my FirstReads wins and am so thankful to GoodReads for bringing these books to me. I've won quite a few books so far and have only not liked one. Out of the others I've loved almost every single other one.
Birthday Girl is FANTASTIC! Tracey Burns is an intricate character, even though it seems at times like she's quite simple. There aren't many authors that I've seen that could have pulled Tracey off like Diane J. Wright did. For Tracey to be th
...more
Rafaella Litvin
Feb 12, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaways
I just got my book yesterday (I won it at the goodreads giveaway) and I'm extremely excited! I didn't believe it would really arrive here in Brazil, but it did!!! I started reading the moment I opened the package and it's really good so far.
---later---
I didn't think much of the book at first but now that I'm done I can say it surprised me , in a very good way. The way she tell's the story , first with Tracey narrating and then in the third person, was really unusual but it worked. The story is v
...more
Melissa
Dec 25, 2009 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Susan
Dec 31, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathryn
When we first meet sixteen-year-old Tracey she is running away from her father’s house, where she has been held captive for two years. She doesn’t really understand why she is running or where she’s going.

As the story goes on we learn more about how Tracey was held captive. Her mother, Adele, had left her at Roy’s house and told her to be good until she came back to pick her up. But Adele never came back. Even though Adele abandoned her, Tracey doesn’t want to believe that her mother has forgot
...more
Erin
Mar 09, 2010 rated it really liked it
3.75 Birthday Girl tells the story of Tracey Burns, who is abandoned by her mother as an adolescent and subsequently spends several years locked away in a single room in her father's home. The Tracey that we first meet in the novel is damaged, naive, and obsessed with finding her erstwhile mother. A disastrous road trip lands her in the middle of the desert, where she finds a supportive community of people who help her reach her full potential as a person.

The book feels a bit uneven throughout
...more
Tayyaba
Dec 29, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
i won this book in a first reads giveaway.

You're introduced to a sixteen year old girl, Tracey in the beginning who is running away from her fathers home, who by the way has had her locked away in a single room for two years (who would ever in their right mind do that to their daughter).

Tracey is taken to social services when she runs away and then is taken to a foster home which eventually burns down and then she's taken to another. This whole time she's begging for someone to find her mother f
...more
Jacqui Ainsworth
Nov 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
I really got engrossed in this book. I couldn't put it down. The story pulls you in and you become very involved with the main character. The writing bothered me at times. It needs better editing but the story is definitely worth reading.
Tara Stone
Sep 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2009
I kept trying to guess where this story was going, but I was usually wrong.
Tiffany
Feb 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, 2010
The plot of this book was amazing and well thought out. I never knew what was going to happen to this girl next.
Kellyreaderofbooks
Jan 28, 2010 rated it it was ok
Birthday Girl tells the story of Tracey Burns, a teenager who has had a tough life, to say the least. Tracey has spent the last year or two (more about that later) locked in a room in her father's home. Her one big wish is to find the mother who left her there when she was a bit younger. Instead, she's put into foster care since no one can track Mom down.

I had some issues with this book. Most notably, with the time frames. It's not clear how many years Tracey even spends locked up: on the back
...more
Melissa
Jan 31, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nina
Got this one from a Goodreads Giveaway e-edition. I will let you know how it turns out.

I enjoyed Birthday Girl. The storyline takes us from a scared fourteen year old girl to an eighteen year old that is learning to trust people. At times I was a bit confused with the timeline of the story. Some of the story is told in flashbacks so the timeline comes together as the story is told. I loved the characters but felt the story could have been fleshed out a bit more. There were a lot of typos in the
...more
Trina
Jul 08, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I won this through giveaway.

I kept finding myself wanting to speak up and fight for Tracey Burns, the main character. It seemed like she couldn't get a break no matter what happened. Just when things started to look a little better for her, an innocent mishap throws her right back into a bad situation.

She was so naive and trusted everyone which didn't help her situation. I wanted her to yell & scream and stand up for herself, but she handled things inside of herself.

It seemed like she grew up in
...more
Leigh
Feb 10, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I received a free download of an ebook version of this novel from the publisher, after not having won the GoodReads giveaway. I loved the main character. I thought she was very sympathetic, and though the book was somewhat predictable, she was easy to root for. I did, however, hesitate when giving this book four stars. It was littered with typos, something that always ruins the momentum for me. In the end, the characters won out over my inner grammarian. =)
Judy
Feb 05, 2010 rated it liked it
Read it on my Kindle -- about a girl "abandoned" by her mother and the various people she is with -- her waiting for her mother to return to take her home to Juneau -- her mother seems to be a real "loser" but in the meantime, Tracey meets some lovely people who become her real family. Not great, but not "bad."
Chelle
Jun 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
I liked this book because of the happy parts. I say that because the harder parts make the happy ones so much better.
Liz
I won this book from a First Reads giveaway. The story is told from the point of view of a teenage girl who is basically abandoned by her mother when she is fourteen or fifteen and left with her father, whose crazy girlfriend locks her in a room for two years until she manages to escape. After she escapes, her main goal is to find her mother and return to Juneau, where they lived with her grandmother (she deludes herself into thinking her mom always meant to come back for her and was kept away f ...more
Megan Palasik
Jan 13, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: kindle
I read this book on my Kindle and obtained a free copy of it from Seedpod Publishing. Thanks Seedpod!

Honestly, I really wanted to enjoy the book more than I actually did. This is the story of a sixteen-year-old girl, Tracey, who was neglected and essentially unwanted by her mother. Her mother, Adele, was a talker who could con her way into, or out of, any situation. She got Tracey's hopes up, then left Tracey in a home where the caregivers kept her in a single room for two years. Sounds interest
...more
Nicole
Jan 02, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: first-reads
My first opinion of this book is: how did this get through an editor's review and published? I have never read a book with so many mistakes! It would be one thing if it were part of the dialect, but the error were mostly in the narration.

The biggest reason that this book is rated a 2 star and not 3 for me, is because of the errors throughout this book. I really don't feel like a reader should have to read entire paragraphs 4-5 times before understanding. There were actually times that I had to
...more
Beth
I won this book in a First Reads giveaway. It was beautifully packaged and included a bookmark and an e-book. I did enjoy it but there were a few things that made the book difficult to read. The first were the grammatical and spelling errors that were prevalent throughout the book. At first, I attributed this to the book being an ARC but I realized it was published in 2008 so I don't know why the editing was so remiss. The other thing is the style of conversation used by the main character. The ...more
JC
Feb 06, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: kindle, my-firsttime, 2010
I got this as a free ebook after not winning the giveaway. First thoughts on the book are that it is pretty depressing. Most of the book follows a teenager, Tracey, as she tries to find her mother. This was certainly a depressing search. So many bad things happen to Tracey and it just feels like she can't break it at first. The book focuses on her birthdays (16th, 17th, 18th).

There are several problems with this book. First off, the narration jumps all over the place. Since it is focused on her
...more
Sharon
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathleen
Feb 01, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-won
I went back and forth on whether I liked this book. At the beginning of the book, I really found it hard to get into and thought the main character was not really developed well. And really even having finished the book I still don't really feel like I know much about the main character Tracy Burns. That said, about half way through the book I really got drawn into the story. I couldn't help feeling at times like I was watching a movie so I wasn't surprised to find out that the author is a scree ...more
Francine
I'd like to thank the author, Diane Wright, for giving me a free e-book copy of Birthday Girl. It was a wonderful read that really touched home for me. I have worked with children in just this type of situation, which I won't go into because I want you all to go out and buy it, and even though it's a difficult read at times, due to the situations, it's a fast paced, root-for-the-character type of book. Actually I read it out loud to my hubby and he also enjoyed it, and he rarely likes much besid ...more
Brent
i got this book in the goodreads book giveaway.

i liked this book. even though tracey was a bit strange at times, i feel that every other character was really well developped, which made up for tracey being a bit too naive.

characters i didnt like: sanjeev and adele

both of them got on my nerves.

UKDana
Jan 25, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: first-reads
Tracey is abandon by her mother at the age of fourteen. She is left with her father and his girlfriend and they force her to live in one room for 2 years until she escapes. As a result of this she rarely speaks and shows virtually no emotions. I simply felt no attachment to the character and couldn't get beyond page 100.
Mackenzie
Jan 26, 2010 rated it did not like it
The amount of errors in this book made it really difficult to pay attention to the storyline. It seems no one edited this book before printing it. There is also a lot of discrepancy about how old Tracey is throughout the story and how time was passing. Overall, it was quite poorly written and I would not recommend this book to anyone.
Sam
Jan 26, 2010 rated it did not like it
If I hadn't received the ebook for free through First Reads, I probably would have given up very early on. The plot is slow-moving and uninteresting. It was easy to feel for Tracey after all that she goes through, but otherwise the story is unengaging.
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Diane J. Wright is a Canadian film & television story consultant and novelist. Birthday Girl is her first novel. Learn more at dianejwright.com. ...more

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