The Different Girl - Gordon Dahlquist
Veronika is one of four identical girls, living on an island for as long as she can remember. She, Caroline, Isobel, and Eleanor, seem to spend each day doing everything alike, set to learn about their surroundings by their caretakers Irene and Robbert. This unvarying daily routine changes when a strange girl, May, washes on shore and forces the girls into contact with the outside world.

The Different Girl is a very quick read at only about 230 pages. Told through Veronika’s voice, it becomes quickly apparent that the girls aren’t quite human, becoming more jarring as the story unfolds. While nothing is explicitly stated it’s still fairly easy to infer what’s going on in the story, and it’s enjoyable to try to work things out.

Unfortunately, this lack of outright information is also the book’s biggest weakness. The story is limited to Veronika’s perspective, and the reader never gets a clear picture of the world outside the small island. It’s a good little story, but it seems that there’s a lot more that can be told about this world. The Different Girl is certainly worth a look, but don’t go in expecting too many answers.

A review copy was provided through the first reads program.