Girl Online: On Tour* - Zoe Sugg
Okay, so if you haven't read either of the books I'll fill you in a little - they focus on Penny, a schoolgirl from Brighton who suffers with anxiety and writes a blog. Penny's world gets turned upside down when she falls for Noah, an American rock star, and their relationship goes from private to public. In 'Girl Online: On Tour', we meet Penny just as she's about to set off with Noah to support him on his European tour with top band 'The Sketch' - but things certainly aren't plain sailing. We follow Penny and Noah as the tour takes its toll on them both, and Penny has to decide if waiting in the wings whilst Noah takes the spotlight is really where she wants to be.
I really enjoyed both 'Girl Online' and 'Girl Online: On Tour'. Although these books are definitely aimed at teens in the Young Adult genre, they're still enjoyable to twenty-somethings and I know these are just the sort of books I would have adored when I was in my teens. Penny's character is, like Zoe, extremely likeable and relatable - she's funny, a little bit clumsy and like most sixteen-year-old girls, is just trying to find her place in the world. I loved the fact that Penny talked so openly about her anxiety throughout both books - despite being a big fan of reading, I don't think I've ever come across a YA book that tackles the tricky subject of anxiety before. It was handled really well and definitely gave an insight into something a lot of people don't really understand.
I particularly liked the fact that in 'Girl Online: On Tour' the message was really clear - don't go chasing the boy, but chase your own dreams instead. As dreamy as Noah is, the fact that Penny refuses to be a tag-along in his career is such a good message for young girls - I know so many girls make finding a boyfriend their main goal at that age, but this book shows that that really isn't the be-all and end-all.
Overall, I thought 'Girl Online: On Tour' was a really great read and would definitely recommend it - particularly to girls in their teens, but not ruling out women in their twenties too. I'd give it a 4/5.
Have you read either/both of Zoe's books? I'd love to know your thoughts!