I hadn't really heard of Laura Bates before stumbling across this competition, and so I didn't really know what to expect from this book. The stereotypes of your average feminist these days aren't the best things in the world, and so I thought that maybe it was going to be a bit less equal rights and a bit more "let's kill all men"! Thankfully this was not the case.
There are a total of 12 chapters in this book, covering a wide variety of different subjects that impact young girls. From social media, to loving your body, from sexuality to the sexualisation of girls in today's society. This book is a fantastic piece of literature and if you haven't read it you 100% definitely should.
The thing about this book is that it's really honest while still maintaining a great sense of humor. It contains some really great lines, which I'm not going to reveal because I don't want to ruin the book. I was being told about things that had always been right in front of my nose, while pointing out how stupid it is that we just . . . go along with them. Why do we do that? Why aren't we standing up to these stereotypes? These are all of the things I'm now questioning since reading this book.
This book isn't just for girls. It talks about the stereotypes and societal structures that effect boys too; and I think that's what makes this book so great and such a good read. It makes sure to address the stereotype that all feminism is about is fighting for women to run the world. That is not the case, and this book contains a whole chapter about how that is not the case!
Girl Up also contains lots of tweets that Laura has received about the experiences girls have had on the street as well as a letter from someone who asked to be included in the book about her own experiences with sexuality and sexual abuse.
If you want to read this book, I must warn you, it contains words like "vagina" and "clitoris" and talks about masturbation and sex, which aren't really things we discuss on a day to day basis and, as discussed in the book, people don't really seem comfortable to talk about. However, please don't let this put you off. It is so important that young girls and young boys know about their own anatomy and know that thinking about these things is okay; it's not like we are taught about all of this stuff in school.
Laura talks about alternative titles for this book, and I think I have one but I don't think it would have gone down as well as girl up: Things that we need to talk about as a society and let people know it's okay to talk about. See, it's just not quite as catchy.
Anyway, if you're interested in buying this book, click here, and let me know if you do buy it, or if this book is now something you would be interested in, in the comments.