The Good Luck Girls
by Charlotte Nicole Davis
Aster. Violet. Tansy. Mallow. Clementine.
Sold as children. Branded by cursed markings. Trapped in a life they never would have chosen.
When Aster’s sister Clementine accidentally murders a man, the girls risk a dangerous escape and harrowing journey to find freedom, justice, and revenge – in a country that wants them to have none of those things. Pursued by the land’s most vicious and powerful forces – both living and dead – their only hope lies in a bedtime story passed from one girl to another, a story that only the youngest or most desperate would ever believe.
It’s going to take more than luck for them all to survive.
“It was easier, she’d been told, if you kept a tune in your head.”
In a fictional, fantastical dystopian world, “The Good Luck Girls” are teenagers, sold into a world of prostitution on the night of their 16th birthday. These young girls are frequently sold by their families to pay a debt, promised that their daughters will be fed, with a roof over their heads at the very minimum.
While it’s an awful topic to read about, I was so engrossed in the first few chapters. It’s Clementine’s birthday and she’s about to spend her first night with a man, or a ‘brag’. Clem’s sister Aster has given her some advice but she’s still terrified and when things get a little out of hand, she accidentally kills the man.
Clementine, Aster and three other girls from the house decide to run, escaping out of a bedroom window. What follows is a kind of Wild West adventure as the girls run, hide and fight those determined to find them.
The premise of this story is good – a group of enslaved girls who have been sold into a brothel escape and go on the run on a quest to find to remove the tattoos branding them as “Good Luck Girls”. But I have to say that I wasn’t a great fan of the fantasy/adventure side of things this book had to offer.
Once the rush of the first few chapters passed, I felt that the plot dwindled somewhat and it seemed that the girls were never going to reach their destination as the same events happened again and again (run, fight, steal, repeat). There was also a lot of terminology which felt a little overwhelming for the size of the book. I just about worked out what landmasters and raveners were, but then there was also vengeants and dustbloods and I’m sure there are some others I’ve forgotten.
Since reading the book, I’ve found out that this is the first in a series. I probably won’t be picking up book two, but I think this story is great for a series as I know there is a lot more of this fantasy world to explore. I’d have liked a little more character development for the girls and perhaps the next books will do this too.
Overall rating: “The Good Luck Girls” had a great opening and I also liked the ending, but I got lost somewhere in the middle. It was an enjoyable read and I’d recommend this for adventure fans or someone looking for a more contemporary Wild West type story – 3 stars.
Thank you to Readers First for sending me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.