Book Briefs: Stalker Girl


Rosemary Graham

Despite having an intriguing title, the YA novel, Stalker Girl, written by Rosemary Graham, guest contributer Christina Huang finds that the read lacks excitement. The book ends with a rushed solution, providing a lack of closure for readers.

Christina Huang, Guest Contributor

Stalker Girl, a YA novel written by Rosemary Graham, introduces readers to Carly Finnegan, a girl who turns to an unfavorable pastime with all the pressures of her life: stalking. A simple online search for information on her ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend builds to an obsession with a girl she considers her replacement. 

To many readers, the summary promises something eerie, and the prospect of being able to see it all play out through the eyes of Carly may attract them. However, readers may find Carly’s situation more unfortunate, and the tone becomes less chilling and more mournful. 

Split into three parts, the first part of the book starts off right at the beginning of her suspicious activity, where readers are quickly shown her descent into obsession. As the shortest part of the three, it mainly serves to illustrate Carly’s impulsive behavior and the regret that she buries. Regret, for the lies she tells the people close to her and her thought process as she recognizes the error. 

While the story is told from the perspective of the stalker, and was an opportunity to provide a unique look at stalking in general, some readers may be disappointed to find that most of her reasoning came from being unable to stop, with no further explanation truly given. 

After the first four chapters, readers are brought back in time to the beginning of it all. They’re introduced to Carly before she met Brian, her ex-boyfriend, and before her life became more complicated. It creates a deeper sense of empathy for her situation, to watch as she falls for him and see how happy they were and could have continued to be. 

It also provides the author with a way to build on the process of events that led to her obsession, though, again, she never really goes into detail to explain everything. However, other readers are happy to settle with the conclusion that there simply isn’t an explanation at times. 

Post-relationship, Carly is suddenly hit with two big pieces of news from each of her parents that completely change her expectations of the summer. A change of plans brings her to an unexpected destination, the setting of the start of her relationship with Brian. 

Readers are able to join them along the ride, but as their relationship progresses, something begins to shift. A comfortable and fairly problem-free relationship turns clingy and filled with possessive assumptions. 

But, nothing horribly wrong needed to happen when she was broken up with. It may have felt abrupt, but the struggles of long-distance coupled with her future actions proved that it was the right decision. 

For some readers, it may have been a little slow and hard to finish, simply because of the level of excitement in the novel that they felt was lacking. On the other hand, other readers may find that it could seem rather repetitive at times, and they could find themselves skimming through anything that seemed to be so. 

Further, the ending may feel like an afterthought to some, a hurried solution that, again, doesn’t give much reasoning, and to the complaint of several readers, was more anti-climatic than expected.

Readers that went into the book looking for more of an explanation should be careful to know that they might not find the insight they were looking for. Additionally, the story itself delivers less of a chilling narrative and more of a drama-filled one.