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Summary

You live on a picturesque communal garden square, an oasis in urban London where your children run free, in and out of other people’s houses. You’ve known your neighbours for years, and you trust them. Implicitly. You think your children are safe. But are they really?

On a midsummer’s night, a 13-year-old girl is found unconscious in a dark corner of the garden square. What really happened to her? And who is responsible?

©2015 Lisa Jewell (P)2015 W F Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"Lisa Jewell's characters are so real that I finish every book half-expecting to bump into one of them. Modern, complex, intuitive, she just goes from strength to strength." (Jojo Moyes)
"A stunning, beautiful, mesmerising book that everyone will be reading." (Tamar Cohen)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Dylan
  • East Sussex
  • 26-05-16

A really good listen

Chose this book quite randomly, found it quite gripping and enjoyable. Definitely would recommend it.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ann D
  • Newcastle, England
  • 21-09-15

A real find!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely! Its a great read/listen. Its an unusual story, with just the right number of twists and turns. Its intelligently written and the characters are all well drawn, with each one interesting. It bounced along nicely and I always wanted to know what happened next.

What about Gabrielle Glaister and Amelie Jewell ’s performance did you like?

The narration was faultless.

Any additional comments?

I wasn't sure that this would be for me, as I am not usually one for narration from a child's point of view. This book was narrated by several characters, including children. However, it was so beautifully written that it really worked. I have not read this author's work before. I read a review elsewhere from someone who said they had 'grown-up' with Lisa Jewell's books since her early 20s, and that they have evolved from stories of family life by young adults, to include older characters. For that reason, I wouldn't rush to read her earlier work. However, I will be downloading her more recent and future novels.

14 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Weak in several parts

What disappointed you about The Girls?

An interesting collection of characters, but Grace and Tyler were the only ones I knew more about by the end of the story - all the others were pretty static and caricatured (the unorthodox home-schooled girls, the holocaust survivor, the non-PC grandfather etc). The new crime mirroring an earlier one was an interesting concept, but the connection between the two was presented very quickly and briefly.

The logistics of the assault on Grace disappointed me most of all; that the perpetrator managed to do everything required whilst presumably in a state of great agitation without being observed by anyone and within a very tight timescale defied belief.

What aspect of Gabrielle Glaister and Amelie Jewell ’s performance might you have changed?

Gabrielle Glaister's narration was smooth and flowing. Her representation of different characters was skillful. Given that, why was she not given the voice of Pip's letters? I found Amelie Jewell's narration to be very irritating and in my opinion it was an indulgence to include the author's daughter as a narrator.

Any additional comments?

I bought this as half of a two-for-one deal. Had I used a credit for The Girls on its own I'd be returning it to Audible for a refund.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Gripping story disappointing towards the end

Interesting story with vivid characters. A lot felt left unexplained and the ending as a result felt disappointing

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

3.5 out of 5

This only loses half a star because I guessed the ending quite early. Well written with vivid, be!ievable female characters. Gabrielle Glaister and Amelie Jewel's narration of the audible version is superb, with Gabrielle's performance of the tween/teenage characters feeling particularly accurate ( complete with upward inflection).

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Gripped

I could not stop listening, I even got a friend to send a pic of the garden layout from her book through, so I could visualise the layout as I listened. All the way through I was trying to work out who it was. I will certainly be listening to more from Lisa

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

very good

enjoyed the book, not what I expected could not wait to get to end, would recommend

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable

One of Lisa Jewell's better mysteries. I quite like the idea of the communal garden inside the busy city, and the characters in this book were very well presented and built. I think Lisa Jewell has a talent in portraying teenagers.
I would recommend this if you will like a mystery, without too much action and heavy on the contemporary drama side.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Awful

I persevered for three hours then gave up: boring as heck! One of the few books I’ve had to give up on - not recommended!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic read with wonderful characters

I have quickly become a Lisa Jewell fan. This book is quiet different to her later psychological thrillers however the sensitive way in which the characters were drawn was a delight. As with her other books Lisa Jewell is a master at developing believable characters and great stories. This was a gentle book read superbly by Gabrielle Glaister who is I think one of the best narrators. She has a way of engaging the listener and drawing them into the story. The descriptions of North London life were very accurate and it was easy to picture the communal gardens and living depicted and the impact it had on the families residing there. A great book.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Olivia
  • 21-07-16

Well told. Compelling. Well worth it.

Author demonstrated the ability to get inside the mindset of teenagers. A nuanced and compelling read. I would recommend.