Book Review: The New Boy – Paula Rawsthorne [YA]

Title: The New Boy
Author: Paula Rawsthorne
Publisher: Scholastic
Publication date: 7th March 2019


Believe in perfect? Zoe does. After all, her new boyfriend is. Or is he? What’s Jack hiding? When a gorgeous new boy starts at Zoe’s school, her first reaction is to feel nervous. He’s way too perfect. Surely he can’t be for real?

But when Jack turns his charm on her, Zoe packs her worries away in a suitcase. After all, he’s popular, handsome and (best of all) nice. Soon, they’re dating. He’s everything she dreamed of – kind, attentive, full of romantic gestures.

But maybe Zoe ought to trust her instincts. Is her dream man truly good – or too good to be true?

Taken from The Scholastic Website


How many times have you discovered something unpleasant or shocking about someone you know and said: “I knew there was something odd about them”? Did you really know, or were you just saying that? Was there something in your gut telling you that something just wasn’t right?

Meet Zoe Littlewood. Friend, daughter, student. She’s also a non-conformist. Going along with what everyone else is doing just isn’t her thing. But, her relatively happy bubble (let’s not worry about her dad and his new wife, Petra, just yet) is about to be disrupted by a new student at her sixth form college – Jack Cartwright.

Everyone wants a piece of Jack. Except Zoe, at least at first. The question is – why?

If you think you know what to expect out of The New Boy, then please read it. It’ll make you think again. Not only is it a trope I’ve never seen before, but it was also one that left me speechless (shook, as the kids say) and desperate for more.

Woven into the tale of Zoe and Jack is a social commentary on the impact of social media on our lives. It talks about how it permeates our everyday lives without us even realising, invading our privacy and affecting our decision making processes.

There are also some difficulties that many teenagers will relate to, such as blended families and challenging friendships.

The New Boy will make your heart beat faster and the hairs on your arms stand up. Dark, disturbing, and an awe-inspiring piece of writing.

Many thanks to Scholastic for providing a copy of this book for an exchange for an honest review.

About the author

Paula Rawsthorne is an award-winning author from Nottingham, UK. You can find Paula on Twitter.

Get your copy

You can order The New Boy from your local independent bookshop, from, or directly from Scholastic.

Comment below

Have you read The New Boy? Comment below, and don’t forget, links to other blogs are welcome here!


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