As they begin, their first stop leads them to a horrible situation (assault), and Trixie makes a split-second decision that sparks a need to run. After that, they consider the way that such events are viewed by the public and the law, deciding to take their chances on the run. Their trip is complicated by their lack of funds and rising fear of what is happening. As the world views their case, it becomes entwined in the #metoo movement. As they question themselves and the world, Trixie and Lux must decide how it will all turn out.
What I loved: This was a truly gripping story that pulled the reader in from the start. It was challenging to read at times, as there is very present danger and assault on page. The book really sets the atmosphere and mindset well, giving the weight and difficulty of the situations and decisions they make. I found the portrayal of the fallout from a past and the current event to feel pretty realistic, with their anxiety and pain permeating the book. As they begin to rely on themselves and each other, the intensity transforms, and I felt the LGBT romance was a great touch.
The conversations around misogyny, metoo, and related rape culture to be thought-provoking. The book shows a few sides of these issues, and I think it would be great for discussion in classrooms or clubs. It ends up being quite an immersive and intense read with unexpected potency.
What left me wanting more: The book felt a bit drawn out in places, but it did also feel realistic to being on the run and figuring out what to do. The ending is also uncertain, with the focus on the journey throughout. I would have liked to see beyond the current end of the book a bit with an epilogue or additional chapter, but this may be just me, as I like to know everything!
Final verdict: Atmospheric, intense, and with thought-provoking themes, TROUBLE GIRLS is a clever and suspenseful YA reimagining of Thelma and Louise. Would recommend for fans of THE PROJECT, THEY WISH THEY WERE US, and I KILLED ZOE SPANOS.