Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson
When high school witch Mila finds out that her best friend Riley has died by suicide, Mila is devastated. How is this possible? Riley isn’t, or rather wasn’t, the kind of girl who would kill herself, especially by drowning herself in the disgusting green lake.
But that’s what the police rule her death as.
Unable to accept it, and going with her gut instincts Mila turns to the one source that could help her crack the case of her friend’s murder: witchcraft.
With the help of an old spellbook, a tube of lipgloss, and the cover of night Mila somehow succeeds to bring back, not only Riley, but to also bring back two fellow classmates, June and Dayton, who died suspiciously just before Riley.
With a group of undead girls, and determination, Mila sets out to set the record straight. To prove that her best friend wouldn’t voluntarily leave her behind. But what she uncovers is more frightening than the three undead girls she’s harboring.
Will Mila crack the case? Or will she end up another victim?
Undead Girl Gang, written by author Lily Anderson, is a realistic read with a heavy paranormal/ghoulish twist. This book will have readers thinking deeply about friendships, and the lengths one will go to for said friendships.
Author Anderson’s writing is stunningly strong. It’s descriptive to the point where, as a reader, I was fully immersed and engaged in the plot that oftentimes it felt real to me. More than though, Anderson’s writing is real – from the dialog to the character interactions, everything felt organic and authentic.
Like her writing, I also found Anderson’s well crafted characters to be just as organic and authentic. Main character Mila is a true force to be reckoned one. She’s full of angst, girl power, and confidence. But those characteristics aren’t the only ones that make up this complex character. She’s also shy, vulnerable and emotional, and very aware of, not only who she is, but of the world and the people in the world around her. Even though she’s a flawed character, and even though sometimes as reader you won’t always understand her motives, the growth you will see in her is what makes her so likable and relatable.
I also love that author Anderson crafted a character like Mila and didn’t shy away from her being angry. She challenges the thought that girls and women shouldn’t be or get angry. And I love how she turned Mila’s anger into something constructive. More than that though, I love how she shows readers, especially female readers, that it is normal and it is okay to be angry.
But Mila isn’t the only great character to fill the pages of this book. Heck! She isn’t the only female character that oozes girl power. Though dead Riley, June, and Dayton are all fantastic representations of what girl power truly means – they believe in relying on themselves to solve the mystery of who is behind the female killing spree in Cross Creek, they stick together no matter what, and more than that they are capable of handling tough situations without the help of outsiders.
I loved all these aspects of these characters, but what I loved most is how, though the story, as a reader I had the chance to see their friendship go from complete and utter hatred of each other to loving and understanding. And still, I loved how as I was reading it made me reflect on my own friendships, and the lengths I’d go to for my very own friends.
Moving on from the characters, as a person who doesn’t read a whole lot of mystery, I enjoyed trying to figure out what was going on in this small town alongside Mila and her undead girl gang. To say that there were so many twists and turns I didn’t see coming would be an understatement. Anderson has truly created a story that will keep readers guessing and terrified.
There is a whole lot to love about Anderson’s latest novel Undead Girl Gang. It was a five-star book for me, a feat that I feel is very rare for me. It was the perfect blend of realisticness and ghoulish horror. And it had a bit of something for everyone – from laugh out loud moments to downright scary ones.
Seriously, what more could you ask for in a book!?
(Cover image from Goodreads)