Wednesday, 2 November 2016

THE FEMALE OF THE SPECIES BY MINDY McGINNIS. Review by KIRTIDA GAUTAM


There are books that leave the reader angry. Ravenous angry. Fingers balled into a fist kind of angry. Not love, joy, happiness. But anger. And yet the reader thanks the author from heart because she made him/her feel
Anger is one of those unfortunate emotions that society doesn't even pretend to understand. 
Anger= bad. 
Anger= out of control. 
Anger= avoid. 
Says who? And why?
Anger is NOT bad. It’s human to feel angry. We are nothing but evolved apes. What makes us inhumane is to lose touch with our innate emotions. That makes us weak. 
ALEX CRAFT is a hero who feels the full range of emotions. She acts upon her emotions. Yes, her methods are questionable. And she is aware of that. I think she deserves understanding. Not sympathy (Alex would hardly care for it), but understanding.
Mindy McGinnis is an author that stuns the readers with her objectivity. She is a God-like figure, always present, always observing, penning down what she sees, but never intrusive. She doesn’t force a story on her characters. She builds strong, relatable characters and then let them be their own persons in the world she creates.
Her command over the craft is commendable. The novel is written from 3 points of view. Alex, Jack, and Peekay. Multiple points of view novels are always a test of an author's craft. 
Are the voices distinct? 
Does the author understand each of her character, in and out? 
Does her characters contributes the same element to the story without brining novelty? 
Yes, yes, and no. 
Mindy is skilled to handle multiple points of view. Even though some of the characters do repeat some part of the story in successive chapters, she uses multiple points of view as a TOOL, so we read a different story. 

The Female of the Species is one of those rare fictions that the world NEEDS. It’s an urgent and pressing need. It is a high time that the elephant in the room needs to be addressed. Ducking the head in the sand won’t make the storm pass away. An incredibly brilliant novel that must become a part of every teenager girl (and boy)’s reading list. Every parent (and teacher, and counselor, and psychologist) must read this before they talk about the growing rape culture.


Kirtida Gautam is a clinical psychologist, screenplay writer, and author of the unpublished Multicultural Upmarket novel I AM 16 I CAN. The novel questions Juvenile Justice System of India and raises opinion AGAINST rape culture. Follow her on Twitter @KirtidaGautam