The New Girl by Jesse Q. Sutanto

*Spoiler free*

Thank you so much to Sourcebooks Fire and NetGalley for the e-ARC!

Lia Setiawan has never really fit in. And when she wins a full ride to the prestigious Draycott Academy on a track scholarship, she’s determined to make it work even though she’s never felt more out of place. But on her first day there she witnesses a girl being forcefully carried away by campus security. Her new schoolmates and teachers seem unphased, but it leaves her unsure of what she’s gotten herself into. And as she uncovers the secrets of Draycott, complete with a corrupt teacher, a golden boy who isn’t what he seems, and a blackmailer determined to get her thrown out, she’s not sure if she can trust anyone…especially when the threats against her take a deadly turn.

After reading and loving The Obsession, I was incredibly eager to read this spinoff of sorts! It sounded like a fantastic thriller, with all the twisty darkness that Jesse excels at! I couldn’t wait to see what this book would hold.

I adore all thrillers by Jesse, and The New Girl is no different. There is just something about these books that feels like something zipping straight through the veins. It’s so, so good.

What I love most about these books is that they are a weird kind of deeply satisfying. Seeing depraved men get what they deserve is just something that speaks to my soul, and I love Jesse for providing that over and over again.

Lia also wants so deeply. She wants and she rages and she feels so much. Seeing all of that on display, so clearly and so upfront, was so wonderful. She does grapple with the guilt of her actions, but there is something lurking underneath, that keeps pushing her down the same path. I love her so much.

This is more of a prequel to The Obsession than a sequel, and seeing Easter eggs from the first book was so cool! They are not directly related, but seeing the beginnings of certain instances was very, very interesting.

The writing was another thing that I loved. It flows so well, and feeds into the absolute pandemonium that goes on inside of Lia’s brain. It practically drips with the emotion that hangs from every action that Lia takes, and just gosh, it is so, so good.

The only qualm I have is that the ending seems a bit fast. I wanted more. But, I can also see why the book ended the way that I did, and I can appreciate the direction the story took. Of course, this is more of a personal opinion than anything else! It didn’t hurt my enjoyment of the overall book.

Overall, I really, really loved this book. It’s darkly satisfying, angry, and the writing seems to make your head spin with just how much emotion if packed into everything. It’s so, so good.

The New Girl comes out February 1, 2022! You can add it on Goodreads and pre-order a copy in the meantime!

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