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Young Adult Fiction 861
Deep examination of teen girl friendships
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Shade loves her best friend, Jadis. They do and share everything together, but there's one thing that Shade wants that Jadis doesn't approve of: a spot on the cheerleading team. When Shade makes the team, she's thrust into a new group of friends, including the three Chloes. The three Chloes are fierce, sometimes vicious, and utterly magnetic. When one of the Chloes dies suddenly under strange circumstances, Shade wonders if Jadis is behind it...but surely her best friend wouldn't go that far.

Shade, Jadis, and the three Chloes are such complex, nuanced characters. Krischer expertly shows how passionate teen girls are, and how deep those friendships can go. Particularly at a young age, people don't always understand how to recognize codependency or how to both love someone and keep healthy boundaries. I love this exploration of intense friendship, friendship breakups, and how each character handles their own emotions when everything starts to go wrong.

Though the plot was much slower than I anticipated, I did like the murder mystery aspect. I completely fell for one of the red herrings and was surprised at who the culprit was. I also appreciated how everything was wrapped up. The characters had a huge, traumatic mess to sort through, and especially for Shade, it wasn't easy to confront some of the serious issues that needed facing, but she did it.

THE FALLING GIRLS is a deep examination of teen girl friendship that asks hard questions about relationships, boundaries, and codependency.

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