Vigilante by Kady Cross
Published by Harlequin on April 1st 2017
A brutally honest, uncompromising story about a teen girl who decides to take matters into her own hands
It's senior year, and Hadley and her best friend, Magda, should be starting the year together. Instead, Magda is dead and Hadley is alone. Raped at a party the year before and humiliated, Magda was driven to take her own life and Hadley is forced to see her friend's attackers in the classroom every day. Devastated, enraged and needing an outlet for her grief, Hadley decides to get a little justice of her own.
Donning a pink ski mask and fueled by anger, Hadley goes after each of the guys one by one, planning to strip them of their dignity and social status the way they did to Magda. As the legend of the pink-masked Vigilante begins to take on a life of its own, Hadley's revenge takes a turn for the dangerous. Could her need for vengeance lead her down a path she can't turn back from?
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Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Social Themes, Sexual Abuse, Violence, Bullying, Thrillers & Suspense
I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. I always endeavor to provide my honest opinion regardless of the source of the book and do not allow receiving a book for free to influence my opinions in any way for any reason.
Very recently, I have discussed with a fellow blogger and author about the fact that, quite often, the hard-hitting, real life topics are shied away from in Young Adult fiction. For a lot of the genre, sheltering today’s youth from any topic that is uncomfortable at all is something that seems to have become the status quo. Be very aware that this book is not one of the ones that do this, and there are some very serious topics addressed right at the outset in this book. The topics of rape, violence, and suicide are very prominently addressed. And I think it is about time.
While for some, these topics may be difficult to read, I think it is critical that we move away from the tendency to shy away from them. Making these topics more prominent in fiction will make them less taboo and abstract, which will make it easier for teens to talk about them when they are real and personal to them.
I managed to read this in pretty much one sitting, in a single night, something I have not been able to do in a very long time between reading slumps, work, school and life in general.
While some aspects of this story may seem to be a bit cliché, the author takes a stab at topics that I think really do need more attention. As a mom of girls, I hope that my daughters will feel empowered enough to speak out. While I would hope they wouldn’t resort to violence unless necessary, I want them to know that it is okay for them to defend themselves.
I applaud the author for taking on these very real, very emotional issues and portraying them in a way that doesn’t denigrate those who have experienced them.
While I do not condone Hadley’s behavior of putting herself in dangerous situations, it is refreshing to see this take on things and I look forward to reading more from this author.