Alyssa’s Reviews – Chicken Girl by Heather Smith (FC)

Welcome back to Reading, Reading, Reading!

Isn’t “Chicken Girl” a fantastic name for a new young adult book? I think it is! This book was filled with funny, intimate, and emotional moments. There were so many relevant and important messages talked about throughout this novel. Even though the book was 200 pages, I still got a lot out of the story. Thanks to Penguin Random House Canada for the finished copy! Now on to the full review…


Synopsis (

Everybody has a story that will break your heart; a poignant coming-of-age YA for fans of David Arnold, from the author of the acclaimed The Agony of Bun O’Keefe, a Kirkus Best of the Year selection.Poppy used to be an optimist. But after a photo of her dressed as Rosie the Riveter is mocked online, she’s having trouble seeing the good in the world. As a result, Poppy trades her beloved vintage clothes for a feathered chicken costume and accepts a job as an anonymous sign waver outside a restaurant. There, Poppy meets six-year-old girl Miracle, who helps Poppy see beyond her own pain, opening her eyes to the people around her: Cam, her twin brother, who is adjusting to life as an openly gay teen; Buck, a charming photographer with a cute British accent and a not-so-cute mean-streak; and Lewis a teen caring for an ailing parent, while struggling to reach the final stages of his gender transition. As the summer unfolds, Poppy stops glorifying the past and starts focusing on the present. But just as she comes to terms with the fact that there is good and bad in everyone, she is tested by a deep betrayal.

This book pleasantly surprised me! The synopsis didn’t sound that unique to me, but it actually turned out to make a good story! However, nothing in this book was very “wowing” to me, and I just thought that it was ok.

The characters in this novel took some warming up to. I did not love any of them at the beginning of the novel, but I slowly enjoyed reading about their adventures. My favourite characters were Miracle, Cam, and Lewis. I loved all of the scenes that they were involved in, and I loved reading about their personal stories.

The romance in the book was my least favourite part of the story. There is an insta-love relationship between two of the main characters within this story at the 30 page mark, which I hated (to say the least). Insta-love, when written beautifully, is not a “problematic” story element in my opinion. However, when it is done badly, I absolutely hate it. And unfortunately, that’s what happened in this story.

The overall plot of this book was interesting. I wished that the first two thirds of this book would have been a lot shorter, and that the last third of the story had been a lot longer. The last third of this book had a much different “vibe” and feel then the first two thirds, and I enjoyed it a lot! The small mystery element and emotional element that occurred during the final third was an amazing part of the story, and by far my favourite.

There are a lot of really important, yet triggering, themes mentioned in this book. Transgender, homelessness, and rape are just a few of the many themes written about in this story, so if any of these things are triggering to you, I would suggest skipping this novel. That being said, these themes and messages made the story a lot more interesting and unique, especially since it is a YA book. I enjoyed all of the things that were talked about, and I believe that they added a lot to the story as a whole.

Overall, I quite liked this book and gave it 3.25/5 stars. Thanks to Penguin Random House for providing me with a finished copy!

Good Night Book Owls!

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