Funnier. Ruder. Angrier. Izzy O’Neill is back in the hilarious sequel to The Exact Opposite of Okay.
It’s been two months since a leaked explicit photo got Izzy involved in a political sex scandal – and the aftershock is far from over. The Bitches Bite Back movement is gathering momentum as a forum for teenage feminists, and when a girl at another school has a sex tape shared online, once again Izzy leads the charge against the slut-shamer. This time she wants to change the state law on revenge porn.
Izzy and her best friend Ajita are as hilarious as ever, using comedy to fight back against whatever the world throws at them, but Izzy is still reeling from her slut-shaming ordeal, feeling angry beyond belief and wondering – can they really make a change?
Way back in 2019, pre-pandemic, I picked up a book called The Exact Opposite of Okay. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I ended up devouring it. I read it after seeing Laura on a panel at the Northern YA Literary Festival and receiving this book, A Girl Called Shameless, for review too. I loved the characters and the story, and the passion for feminism that the book gave off. I wanted to read A Girl Called Shameless straight after. But for some reason, I didnt grab it instantly. Then a few months later, I moved house. In the house move I managed to put the book right at the back of a bookshelf, and I forgot all about it until a few months ago.
Thankfully, as part of my dedication to reading this year I decided to pull 22 books to read in 2022 that had been on my to be read pile for far too long. A Girl Called Shameless was one of them and I finally picked it up in February.
This book can be read as a standalone, but references The Exact Opposite of Okay a lot. I really liked the references as it made remembering what happened in the book I read 3 years ago a lot easier. Izzy was still just as full of sass and determination as she was in the first book, but was still hurting from what happened to her. I loved where that all took her in A Girl Called Shameless as she worked through a lot and it showed what people go through to recover from crimes they are victims of.
Every part of A Girl Called Shameless calls out people for being a-holes. It reminds us that everything is worth fighting for when you care about it deeply. I really loved that the characters were a true representation of life too. There were black, mixed race, LGBTQ+ and disabled characters, and they were just themselves. Izzy has a fantastic support network around her and I loved that there was just so much love amongst the hate of the topics talked about. There was so much humour too. Laura Steven is honestly hillarious and her writing, even about some really serious topics will make you laugh out loud throughout.
I really hope this isn’t the final book that we get from Laura about Izzy O’Neil, however there hasn’t been another since 2019, and Laura is busy writing other stories that sound just as awesome! I definitely recommend this series if you are yet to read it – you will get angry and you will laugh out loud… sometimes at the same time… but you will love it for sure.
A Girl Called Shameless is the second in the Izzy O’Neil series by Laura Steven. My copy was sent to me back in 2019 by Egmont UK in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are my own.
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