The Girl Who Cried Wolf

A growing up story with a difference, and a startling debut, The Girl Who Cried Wolf shows the tumultuous transition from teenager to young woman and is a story about believing in something, whether love, faith or simply yourself.

Anna Winters is beautiful, reckless and entirely self-absorbed. She spends more time thinking up reasons to call in sick to school than she does studying for her A levels. She shies away from her family, from responsibility – from anything in fact that doesn’t involve alcohol and endless parties with her friend Jules.
 

Anna assumes that her headaches are an inconvenient symptom of her wild lifestyle, until a doctor tells her that she has cancer…

As a terrifying black cloud descends upon her, Anna finds solace in Michael, another patient in the oncology ward. Michael shows Anna a chink of light in the darkness and sees beauty behind her illness and loves her sassy wit. He makes Anna forget she is ill.
 

Michael recovers; but Anna’s prospects worsen. And in emergency surgery, as she hovers between life and death, she is given a stark glimpse of why her life is so broken, and as she realises the simple fulfillment of being truly content, fears it may now be too late…

Genre

Young Adult

Critic Evaluation

Cover Design Score: 7

The cover is attractive and well laid out but doesn't give any real insight into the story.

Book Blurb Score: 8

The blurb covers the main elements of the story and offers the reader enough to be enticing without giving away too much information.

Formatting Score: 10

No formatting issues.

Grammar & Spelling Score: 10

No grammar or spelling issues

Plot & Structure Score: 9

The structure cleverly reveals what lies behind Anna's anger -- but not too quickly. This is very satisfying. We think we know her, as she thinks she knows herself, then we are surprised, as is she, as the story, her story unfolds.

Character Development Score: 10

Anna's behaviour is appalling at the start; then we discover her illness and in some ways, that explains her mood changes and explosions of anger -- but there is more to it, and we learn this slowly, along with Anna as she gains insight. The way her character developes is skilfully wrought. Anna is deeply flawed and very believable.

Originality Score: 9

I found the plot very original. At no point did the author descend into sentimentality. The end was hopeful, with a sense there was more to come.

Pacing Score: 9

Pacing is excellent. The author allows us to get to know Anna through the traumas she is forced to endure.

Use of Language Score: 9

I particularly liked the different voices and interchanges between characters. Anna's interaction with Izzy is different to her interaction with Michael and her mother, and so forth.

Overall Readability Score: 10

I raced through this book, desperate to find out how Anna's story unfolded.

This book received a critic's score of 91 out of 100 possible points.

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