Skip to main content

The Girl She Used to Be by David Cristofano

The Girl She Used to Be by David Cristofano is the bittersweet tale of the twenty-six-year-old former Melody Grace McCartney, a name she has been unable to use since the age of six, when Melody and her parents entered the Witness Protection Program. Just a random, regular family trying to eat breakfast at Melody's favorite restaurant, they witnessed a murder by Mafia member Tony Bovaro. The losses just kept coming because, in addition to numerous moves and identity changes, teenager Melody, angry at her parents, gave an interview to a reporter. Her parents lived exactly 29 hours after the article was published.

At the start of the book, though, Melody is living on her own and working as a math teacher. Feeling a certain sense of dissatisfaction and restlessness, she falsely claims that she has received a phone call from someone who used her real name. Time for another move.

Ironically, Jonathan Bovaro, Tony's son, does know exactly where Melody is, and he's ready to enter her life. He's handsome and charming in a violent, dangerous, forbidden kind of way. He offers Melody the chance to become herself again, something the Witness Protection Program is never going to be able to do. Can she trust him, and how can he deliver on that promise, even if his intentions are honorable?

This is a novel about responsibility, blame, character, and freedom, and not just on an individual basis. Would Megan's parents have told about what they saw if they had known how their lives would change forever? How does Megan cope with the fact that her teenage tantrum allows the Bovaro family to find her parents? What does the government owe Megan? And how does someone from a background like Jonathan's become the hero of Megan's dreams?

This was Cristofano's debut novel, and I hope he has something else published soon.

And a thank you to Cindy for writing a review that caused me to buy this book. http://cindysloveofbooks.blogspot.com/2009/05/girl-she-use-to-be-review.html

My overall personal rating of The Girl She Used to Be is a B+.

Comments

Cindy said…
Hi, I am so happy you enjoyed it and that my review caused you to buy it. I am so happy. I feel like a kid in the candy store. Thank you for mentioning me. :)
I know. Isn't that the best feeling when someone reads a book you've read and likes it?

On the other hand, I always feel disappointed when someone doesn't like a book that I did, but we're all different, fortunately, and have different reading tastes.
robin_titan said…
I really liked this one too! Glad you liked it :) Can't wait to read more from David Cristofano.

Popular posts from this blog

If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by Jon McGregor

The May selection for my work book club is Jon McGregor's If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things (2002). The novel follows various individuals in one neighborhood on a particular day, an ordinary day that ends with a terrible tragedy.

Here's the short set of questions I e-mailed to book club members yesterday, along with my own responses.

Did you have a favorite character, or one that spoke to you the most? Who and why?
The father with the burned hands is the one who stayed with me the most after reading the book.

Did you notice that the day on which the events unfold is actually the same day that Diana, Princess of Wales, died? Does knowing that make any difference in how you see the story? I wouldn't have made the connection if I hadn't just watched some of the coverage of the Royal Wedding. To quote the author, he chose this particular day because his novel is about how ". . .everyday miracles of life and death go unwitnessed in favor of celebrity and sensati…

Current Little Pleasures

Girls' weekend in Omaha with Maya and her friend.

Happy Buddha:  Sweet Orange and Cedar Shower Foam from RITUALS

Time for iced or blended peppermint mochas.

Shopping for little gifts for Maya's Japanese pen pal.  They were matched through their schools, and we're hoping she can stay with us for a few days this summer.

The flock of wild turkeys, foxes, and other assorted wildlife entertaining us this fall.

Thanksgiving plans to visit my sister.

Hallmark Channel's Countdown to Christmas is back!

Current Little Pleasures

Christmas Keepsake Week, July 14-23, filled with Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel.

Sending Christmas (in July) cards with a Peace greeting to some of my favorite people.  Why not??

Scott Tube Free Toilet Paper--nothing to recycle.

Haagen-Dazs Coffee Ice Cream--always!

Baby Driver movie.

Seeing photos from my sisters and niece on Facebook during their Italy trip.  I can't imagine they will want to come back home!

What are your current little pleasures?