Reading Squad definitely gave me some “Jennifer’s Body” vibes and I loved it. There’s social commentary, werewolves feasting, and queer romance. With so many layers, I ended up reading Squad in one night! Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts.
When Becca transfers to a high school in an elite San Francisco suburb, she’s worried she’s not going to fit in. To her surprise, she’s immediately adopted by the most popular girls in school. At first glance, Marley, Arianna, and Mandy are perfect. But at a party under a full moon, Becca learns that they also have a big secret.
Becca’s new friends are werewolves. Their prey? Slimy boys who take advantage of unsuspecting girls. Eager to be accepted, Becca allows her friends to turn her into a werewolf, and finally, for the first time in her life, she feels like she truly belongs.
But things get complicated when Arianna’s predatory boyfriend is killed, and the cops begin searching for a serial killer. As their pack begins to buckle under the pressure—and their moral high ground gets muddier and muddier—Becca realizes that she might have feelings for one of her new best friends.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
Squad is a premise I fell in love with even before I saw the gorgeous art. A group of girls who turn into werewolves to take down slimy predatory boys? Count me in. But Sterle’s drawing style is able to balance the darkness and shadows with some beautiful illustrations and stunning color work. I can definitely see how Squad could have gone another direction. However, at the core of Squad is a story about friendships. Some that have rocky foundations and others that nurture.
Squad touches on how we try so hard to fit in. We chase that sense of belonging and fitting in. Of having a place we can rest upon. But at the same time, finding one that affirms us, that comes without strings and obligations, is also explored. Tokuda-Hall’s story examines the double sided nature of perception and relationships in society. If you’ve come for the werewolves and queer romance, then you’re in luck. But at the same time, if you love a story about sisterhood and friendship, perception and belonging, this is for you.
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