*Just a heads up – this is a book about sexual assault/rape/rape culture so if you feel you may be triggered then I wouldn’t recommend picking up this book.
Title: No Virgin
Author: Anne Cassidy
Year Published: 2016
Source: Sent from the publisher Hot Key Books to review.
Goodreads link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31114950-no-virgin
“From the author of the critically acclaimed, LOOKING FOR JJ, shortlisted for the Whitbread Prize in 2004 and the Carnegie Medal in 2005.
My name is Stacey Woods and I was raped.
Stacey is the victim of a terrible sexual attack. She does not feel able to go to the police, or talk about it to anybody other than her best friend, Patrice. Patrice, outraged, when she cannot persuade her to go to the police, encourages Stacey to write everything down. This is Stacey’s story.
A tautly told and important book, perfect for readers of Asking for It by Louise O’Neill.”
No Virgin is a powerful read set in London about rape culture. The main character is Sracey who is having trouble with her family. So she decides to bunk off school and heads into Shoreditch where she meets Harry Connaught, a rich posh boy who attends a private school in Kensington, the opposite to the public sixth form Stacey attends in Stratford, East London. Which as you can imagine, sets up a Romeo/Juliet between the two of them. It wasn’t exactly the most comfortable book to read. I’m a Londoner, I frequently visit some of the places mentioned in the book – Stratford, Oxford Circus, Selfridges, Shoreditch. And it made me think about how many people have stories like Stacey’s that are walking amongst us, which really hit home for me.
The book is written as Stacey writing her story for her best friend Patrice to read, because the situation is still raw for her to physically talk about. I grew to like this choice of writing style, even if I was a tad confused at the beginning.
Even though the book is just under 200 pages, Anne Cassidy manages to pack a lot into building the character of Stacey. Her family dynamic was interesting to read about including her separated parents and her younger sister who became pregnant at 14. And I particularly enjoyed reading about her dreams of becoming a fashion student.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It’s definitely an important one with an important message. This book was different to others I’ve read on the topic because of the ending, which I won’t spoil.
You might like this if you enjoyed:
- All The Rage by Courtney Summers
- Asking For It by Louise O’Neill
Thank you to Hot Key Books for sending me a copy.
Until next time!