By Tessa Hadley
Harper, 2014. 272 pgs. Fiction.
Clever Girl follows Stella as she goes from a child to middle age through trials and ordinary life experiences. Hadley is able to write ordinary life changes in a fascinating way and creates a character you want to watch grow up. Stella goes through deaths in her family, affairs, a teenage pregnancy, multiple jobs just to get by and all the emotions that go with these sometimes difficult changes. Sometimes the plot was slow, but I continued to be interested in Stella's life and her decisions she had to keep making to survive and provide for her child.
Stella powers through everything that is handed to her and she creates friendships and family from the people that show her kindness. The descriptions of Bristol and her environment were great. The book is an easy read and this domestic fiction leads to a happy ending for Stella. I really enjoyed the main character and her perseverance is to be admired.