Ordinary Girls

Ordinary Girls

Perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Sarah Mlynowski, this heartfelt and humorous contemporary take on Sense and Sensibility follows two sisters—complete opposites—who discover the secrets they’ve been keeping make them more alike than they’d realized.For two sisters as different as Plum and Ginny, getting on each other’s nerves is par for the course. But when the family’s...

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Title:Ordinary Girls
Author:Blair Thornburgh
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Ordinary Girls Reviews

  • Melissa

    ONE OF MY FAVORITE BOOKS. It's amazing. And I could spout out a soliloquy about how wonderfully smart and fantastic and important it is, but you should just read it for yourself.

    It's a quiet, warm, poignant story about the complex and emotional bond between sisters, with a hint of tragedy and romance. Upon finishing the story, expect to feel utterly content and complete.

  • Samantha (WLABB)

    From the opening, where Plum lamented how she had never been good at beginnings, I found myself totally engrossed with her storytelling and this tale. There was something about Plum's voice, that made me want to get to know her better, and I could not the resist the charm and allure of her quirky world.

    This was a tale of two sisters - one very dramatic, the other quite pragmatic. They had their ups and downs with each other, but their relationship was the heart and soul of the story for me.

    I

    From the opening, where Plum lamented how she had never been good at beginnings, I found myself totally engrossed with her storytelling and this tale. There was something about Plum's voice, that made me want to get to know her better, and I could not the resist the charm and allure of her quirky world.

    This was a tale of two sisters - one very dramatic, the other quite pragmatic. They had their ups and downs with each other, but their relationship was the heart and soul of the story for me.

    I adore the exploration of the sibling bond, and this one was indeed, very special. Plum had always felt overshadowed by her sister. She thought Ginny was more attractive, popular, intelligent, and likable, and she was often tired of being compared to her sister. However, via flashbacks and tender and humorous interactions between the two in the present, I got to bask in the beauty of their sisterly love. I had so much fun at their movie nights, and greatly enjoyed their shared love of Romantic period literature. Yes, literary references abound in this novel, and they were so well placed, never failing to delight me.

    During the time of this story, the family was under more stress than usual. The house was falling apart, cash flow was becoming an issue, and Ginny was often in a state of hysteria involving her college plans. Plum found an escape from the chaos via the oddest source - Tate Kurokawa, one of the "loud sophomore boys" she usually tried to avoid. Their odd friendship was one of the most precious parts of the book for me. I wore a stupid grin on my face almost every single time they shared the page, and could not get enough of their sweet and awkward encounters.

    One of the biggest things plaguing this family was their grief. They had lost their father a decade ago, but still hadn't really come to terms with that loss. This pain of it ran deep and it festered within the family, finally coming to a fever pitch at one point during the book. It was quite a profound moment, and I found it very moving.

    Ordinary Girls was a delightful tale filled with interesting family dynamics, sisterly affection, first love, and two young women finding their own sense of self. It was charming, witty, amusing, heartwarming, heartbreaking, and throughly entertaining.

    *ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Rec-It Rachel

    I really liked this. It was like little vignettes within larger acts and very different from WHO'S THAT GIRL

  • Book Hunter

    This is a story of two sisters that could not be more different – 15 year old Plum is the sensible, logical, not-brilliant one and her older sister Ginny is the hyper-sensitive, melodramatic, smart one. This book was a nice surprise. I thoroughly enjoyed it and laughed aloud quite often. I loved the setting of an old house and all the small, quirky details of family life. The romance was surprisingly sweet and charming. The writing was a delightful mix of classic and modern with plenty of humour

    This is a story of two sisters that could not be more different – 15 year old Plum is the sensible, logical, not-brilliant one and her older sister Ginny is the hyper-sensitive, melodramatic, smart one. This book was a nice surprise. I thoroughly enjoyed it and laughed aloud quite often. I loved the setting of an old house and all the small, quirky details of family life. The romance was surprisingly sweet and charming. The writing was a delightful mix of classic and modern with plenty of humour too. The story was wrapped up very nicely. It was one of those books that ends in a warm hug. All in all, an absolute delight of a book. Highly recommended to all fans of Austen and Bronte.

  • Kalie

    The characters in a Blair Thornburgh novel feel as if they’ve escaped from an episode of

    and that should annoy me. It really should. However, as with her last book,

    , I found

    inherently charming and brimming with so much heart that any initial annoyance I felt disappeared early on. It’s occasionally over-the-top and melodramatic as any loose retelling of an Austen classic can be, but it’s near impossible to not be immediately invested in the plights of

    The characters in a Blair Thornburgh novel feel as if they’ve escaped from an episode of

    and that should annoy me. It really should. However, as with her last book,

    , I found

    inherently charming and brimming with so much heart that any initial annoyance I felt disappeared early on. It’s occasionally over-the-top and melodramatic as any loose retelling of an Austen classic can be, but it’s near impossible to not be immediately invested in the plights of Plum and Ginny. It’s a book that takes unabashed pleasure in its own love of literature. If you’re in the mood for a little hyperbole, literary references in abundance, and a sister dynamic that’s both loving and exasperating, then

    ought to be on your list.

    For me personally, I enjoyed her previous novel just a bit more (it was more inclusive and hit more of my sweet spots), but Thornburgh is fast becoming one of my favorite contemporary voices in YA who definitely deserves more notice.

  • Corinne Wilson

    The Blatchley sisters' huge ramsackle house is strewn with pets, copies of Jane Eyre and Little Women, paintings by their mother, DVDs of Jeeves and Wooster/old classic movies/Jane Austen adaptations, and family inside jokes. It would definitely have appealed to teenage me, so I picked up this book despite my tendency to roll my eyes at Jane Austen adaptations.

    Thornburgh doesn't try too hard at adapting every aspect of the Dashwood sisters' adventures the way fanfic authors so often do with

    The Blatchley sisters' huge ramsackle house is strewn with pets, copies of Jane Eyre and Little Women, paintings by their mother, DVDs of Jeeves and Wooster/old classic movies/Jane Austen adaptations, and family inside jokes. It would definitely have appealed to teenage me, so I picked up this book despite my tendency to roll my eyes at Jane Austen adaptations.

    Thornburgh doesn't try too hard at adapting every aspect of the Dashwood sisters' adventures the way fanfic authors so often do with P&P, but keeps the spirit of the thing. Ginny is the high strung, intelligent sister who is waxing dramatic at college admissions rather than romance, and Plum (Patience) is the practical, shy sister who always seems to get left with the dishes. Plum finds herself striking up an unlikely friendship with a Loud Sophomore Boy, and it makes sense that instead of a shy gentleman who can't seem to get his crap together, our heroine is spending time with a teenage boy who never seems to think things through and is keeping unfortunate company not with a gold digger, but with other teenage boys who sometimes are crude, sometimes are bullies, and often aren't the person he wants to be. Ginny has no official romance (an older man with an 18 year old...doesn't adapt well), and the part of the steady but lonely man who saves her life is played by family friend Almost-Doctor Andrews, an adjunct professor border who is part of the Blatchley clan and treated like family (he's ten years her senior, and after a dramatic event may start to think of her differently, but it's left open ended).

    I liked that each sister develops an unexpected hobby that they got from their dad. He's a character in his own right, an absence in the house.

    Many of the character-changing scenes, in which things might turn out all right if Ginny would mellow out and Plum would speak from the heart, are about their relationship as sisters rather than the men. I especially enjoyed the quote from Jane Austen about how her sister is surely the greatest writer of the age; these sisters are each sure that they can never measure up to each other. The author manages to tell a new story while retelling an old one, with subtlety in all the right places. Hi de hi de ho.

  • 17wynnh101

    I really enjoyed this book because it was about everyday life so I could relate to it. I found it funny and relatable however not much went on throughout it. There was a good ending because at the struggles the girls were going through were resolved. I would recommend it to girls.

  • Blodeuedd Finland

    So nothing really happens, and a lot of fancy words are used, but, it was just so lovely to read a YA book where ok so there was some drama, but it was real drama. It was calm, and then a storm might come, but they weathered it.

    Patience and Ginny lives with their mum in a crumbling house. Too big, too old, plumbing that goes out, not enough money to care for it.

    Their mum only works part-time at the uni, her paintings does not sell. Money is a problem.

    Ginny is a dramaqueen in the old sense, I

    So nothing really happens, and a lot of fancy words are used, but, it was just so lovely to read a YA book where ok so there was some drama, but it was real drama. It was calm, and then a storm might come, but they weathered it.

    Patience and Ginny lives with their mum in a crumbling house. Too big, too old, plumbing that goes out, not enough money to care for it.

    Their mum only works part-time at the uni, her paintings does not sell. Money is a problem.

    Ginny is a dramaqueen in the old sense, I mean 19th century way. All those Austen and Bronte heroes, or wait, Anne, yes totally Anne. Ginny is really smart, but worries constantly how to get into College, and then pay for it.

    Patience is the calm, normal one, she is the narrator as she worries about their home, about her sister who is always in the spotlight, and then she gets a secret of her own. And I liked that, something just for her, all so very calm and by accident.

    It is very sweet, upbeat, and even when they struggle they push forward, at least Patience does. I enjoyed it.

    Narrator

    Oh she nailed Ginny when she was despairing at the world at times, so drama. She gave Patience aka Plum a great voice too. I liked it and made the story flow.

  •  Amelia

    I've just wasted several hours of my life on complete nonsense. This book has no plot, no likeable characters I could root for, no character development, no good writing, NOTHING. I don't understand how this book has such high ratings because I literally cannot tell you what this book is about or what the point of it is because it has no point and no story.

    The writing is too weird. The MC thinks and talks like a character from a Jane Austen novel, but also like an average modern teen and it

    I've just wasted several hours of my life on complete nonsense. This book has no plot, no likeable characters I could root for, no character development, no good writing, NOTHING. I don't understand how this book has such high ratings because I literally cannot tell you what this book is about or what the point of it is because it has no point and no story.

    The writing is too weird. The MC thinks and talks like a character from a Jane Austen novel, but also like an average modern teen and it just doesn't mix well. It sounds awkward and ridiculous. I mean, they talk about college, boys, juuls and whatnot, but with the language of a governess from the 19th century.

    Then there's the characters. I HATED Ginny. She was annoying, never did anything except whine, treated her sister and mother horribly and just had an irritating personality. She can literally be summed up in one sentence which is a quote directly from Plum:

    "You don't do anything useful. Ever. All you do is lie around and cry like the crazy person you are."

    I will admit that in the end, she realized she needed some professional help but it took too long to get there and I can't change my opinion about her just because of that one scene.

    Plum on the other hand was simply average. At times a bit weird but not good weird. Mediocre weird. Does that even make sense? Basically, she didn't do anything remarkable, she just spent the entirety of the book tolerating her sister's hysterics, walking her dogs and having awkward conversations with Tate the Popular Guy Who's Actually Not A Douche™. That's the plot. No romantic tension, no life changing events...just Plum and her family having eccentric conversations about unimportant topics. And of course, quoting famous books. That's it.

  • Christina (A Reader of Fictions)

    Thornburgh's writing just isn't for me, running heavily on quirk and very literary. I also wanted this to be a retelling, when it's more inspired by based on the opening. Also, another very personal pet peeve: the chapters are SO LONG.

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