Girl Mans Up by M-E GirardGirl Mans Up by M-E Girard

Girl Mans Up

byM-E Girard

Hardcover | September 6, 2016

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All Pen wants is to be the kind of girl she’s always been. So why does everyone have a problem with it? They think the way she looks and acts means she’s trying to be a boy-that she should quit trying to be something she’s not. If she dresses like a girl, and does what her folks want, it will show respect. If she takes orders and does what her friend Colby wants, it will show her loyalty. But respect and loyalty, Pen discovers, are empty words. Old-world parents, disintegrating friendships, and strong feelings for other girls drive Pen to see the truth-that in order to be who she truly wants to be, she’ll have to man up.
Title:Girl Mans UpFormat:HardcoverDimensions:384 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 1.21 inPublished:September 6, 2016Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1443447048

ISBN - 13:9781443447041

Customer Reviews of Girl Mans Up

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Valuable Contribution I bought this to read during Pride month, but didn't get to it til a bit later. I'm so glad I read it! I really connected with Pen, and there just aren't enough books with protagonists like her, who represent an often overlooked side of the LGBTQ+ community. Girard clearly did her research, and created a character who is believable and flawed and human, and just trying to be herself in a world that keeps pushing her back. Themes of love, family, and acceptance play an important role in aiding Pen in her own discovery, and Girard makes clear that those themes are not always synonymous.
Date published: 2017-09-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Such an inspiring book! I never had too much thought on what my life would be like if parents didn't accept who I am. They'll support me in anything. For Pen it was the complete opposite and she still got through it. There were so many life lessons to learn from Pen and supporting characters. Pen an inspiration to everyone no matter who you are.
Date published: 2017-08-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! Amazing to understand the challenges people go through!
Date published: 2017-01-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! This was my first contemporary novel ever, and I'm so glad I started with this one. I really related with Pen, as her struggles with her gender and presentation align with my own. The main romance was really great, I loved Blake, she was ultra book-girlfriend material. The depictions of lesbian and bi female characters were all well done. The writing style itself was clean and crisp, simple and let nothing fly over the reader's head. Overall, I think the characters were the strongest part of this book, as they were all developed and had clear motivations and all of them were different.
Date published: 2016-10-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Distinctive, authentic, and unique Canadian YA - M.E. Girard nails it! I was really excited to read Girl Mans Up by M.E. Girard because I’ve never read a novel with a gender-fluid character. I was fortunate enough to meet the author at an event at Harper Collins Canada a few weeks ago, and she’d given me the scoop: Pen is a girl who has no interest in being a boy. She happens to dress “masculine” and likes girls, but she’s not transgender. She’s okay in her body. It’s the people around her, including her parents and some of her friends, who are constantly putting the pressure on for Pen to “define” herself as a girl or boy. What’s interesting about this character is that she IS that okay with herself. There isn’t that much self-consciousness about her body, or about what she likes. Instead of feeling ashamed of who she is, right from the beginning, Pen owns her identity, her look, and her likes and dislikes. Her voice is distinctive, authentic, and unique in YA and M.E. Girard nails it. That’s the best part of this book. The synopsis doesn’t do justice to just how realistic it all feels – as a girl from an immigrant family who grew up in a community kind of like Pen’s, I really understood her. While I never felt as gender-fluid as Pen might feel, I did have parents who had definite ideas of what a “girl” and a “boy” should look and act like. While the book itself slowed down about two-thirds of the way through (it was long for a YA book), the characters sing, from Pen’s brother and family to her newfound crush and friends. It’s a strong debut, and I’ll definitely be looking for Girard’s next novel.
Date published: 2016-09-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it! All Pen wants is to be the kind of girl she’s always been. So why does everyone have a problem with it? They think the way she looks and acts means she’s trying to be a boy—that she should quit trying to be something she’s not. If she dresses like a girl, and does what her folks want, it will show respect. If she takes orders and does what her friend Colby wants, it will show her loyalty. But respect and loyalty, Pen discovers, are empty words. Old-world parents, disintegrating friendships, and strong feelings for other girls drive Pen to see the truth–that in order to be who she truly wants to be, she’ll have to man up. This was a book that was on my radar for a while now but I was completely caught off-guard at how much I was sucked into Pen’s life. I wasn’t expecting a light, fluffy read but the more I got into it, the more I could see so many girls I know in Pen. She was a character who was hard to place in a box and I loved that about her. Pen was a girl who loved to play video games, felt her most comfortable wearing her older brother’s baggy clothes, and was tired of everyone in her life making fun of her or giving her a hard time about not meeting their expectations of her. She wasn’t the girly girl her parents wanted, she wasn’t a pushover like her best friend wanted. Pen was herself and she only wanted people to let her be herself. Her conflict, her growth, came from standing up to people and from having to get the courage to either tell them to back off her or to walk away, even if it meant walking away from a longtime friend. The supporting cast were a great assortment of characters. They ranged from overprotective and traditional parents, a brother trying to live his own life but also watch out for his little sister, guy friends who could be douche bags one minute and had your back the next, a girl caught up in a mess with one of those guys, and a girl who was exactly Pen’s type and seemed to possibly like her back. It was Pen’s story but there were a lot of characters who had their own smaller arcs within her overall story. My favourite relationships ended up being between Pen and her brother Johnny, and the more subtle one of Pen and her friend Tristan that was sadly didn’t get to see too much of(I would totally read a Tristan companion story). I think Pen is an important voice. She was someone who knew who she was and was comfortable with it but had to deal with everyone else trying to shove her into a label that she just didn’t want. She wanted to be Pen, she was happy being Pen, and why should she change to make other people happy. *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Date published: 2016-09-15

Editorial Reviews

“A strong genderqueer lesbian character, imperfect, independent, and deserving of every cheer.”