Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Female of the Species Blog Tour: On Rape Culture


Hey guys! Today, Mindy McGinnis is stopping by our blog to share a guest post on rape culture. Her post is just as powerful and compelling as her book, so make sure you check it out below!


The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins
Pub Date: September 20th, 2016
Buy it: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository
Alex Craft knows how to kill someone. And she doesn’t feel bad about it. When her older sister, Anna, was murdered three years ago and the killer walked free, Alex uncaged the language she knows best. The language of violence.

While her crime goes unpunished, Alex knows she can’t be trusted among other people, even in her small hometown. She relegates herself to the shadows, a girl who goes unseen in plain sight, unremarkable in the high school hallways.

But Jack Fisher sees her. He’s the guy all other guys want to be: the star athlete gunning for valedictorian with the prom queen on his arm. Guilt over the role he played the night Anna’s body was discovered hasn’t let him forget Alex over the years, and now her green eyes amid a constellation of freckles have his attention. He doesn’t want to only see Alex Craft; he wants to know her.

So does Peekay, the preacher’s kid, a girl whose identity is entangled with her dad’s job, though that does not stop her from knowing the taste of beer or missing the touch of her ex-boyfriend. When Peekay and Alex start working together at the animal shelter, a friendship forms and Alex’s protective nature extends to more than just the dogs and cats they care for.

Circumstances bring Alex, Jack, and Peekay together as their senior year unfolds. While partying one night, Alex’s darker nature breaks out, setting the teens on a collision course that will change their lives forever.

In preparing to do a guest post about rape culture, I wondered what I had to say that could add to the conversation. The subject has been covered, and well, by others. So I told myself to wait for a couple of days, and something would come up.

I didn't mean for my thoughts to be taken literally.

Last week was our county fair. It's been hot and dry here. Thousands of cars and pairs of feet had stirred up a dust cloud, and as I was leaving the grounds I saw a minivan coated in a fine film of dirt that someone had decided to treat as a canvas. The ubiquitous dick and balls drawing was everywhere, along with FUCK ME scrawled multiple times.

I watched people walk past it, some pointing and laughing, some shaking their heads. Parents covered their children's eyes and rolled their own. But nobody did the one thing that made the most sense.

Nobody erased it.

There we were in a public place with multiple erect, demanding penises in clear view of anyone who walked past, along with a directive to perform a sexual act on it. And no one was willing to make it go away with a swipe of their forearm. Sure, it can be argued that they didn't want to touch someone else's personal property, but I wonder if such passivity sends the message that the dicks had a right to be there, or in the least, are an acceptable background in our culture, one deserving only of an eye roll and a quicker step to put it behind you.

Do I think people are being actively harmed by dicks drawn on dirty cars? I don't know. As for the FUCK ME, I can't argue against bad language without painting myself a hypocrite, as I have a sailor's mouth. It's the passivity that bothers me, the acceptance of a situation that young girls will see a dick as soon as they are old enough to open their eyes in public - and will never stop seeing them.

I did the only thing I thought I could do. I tucked my hand in my shirt sleeve and wiped the van free, uncovering a sticker family on the back, two little girls bringing up the rear. 

So that's two that didn't have to see a dick. 

It's a start.


Mindy McGinnis is a YA author who has worked in a high school library for thirteen years. Her debut, NOT A DROP TO DRINK, a post-apocalyptic survival story set in a world with very little freshwater, has been optioned for film by Stephanie Meyer's Fickle Fish Films. The companion novel, IN A HANDFUL OF DUST was released in 2014. Look for her Gothic historical thriller, A MADNESS SO DISCREET in October of 2015 from Katherine Tegen Books. Mindy is represented by Adriann Ranta of Wolf Literary.
Connect with Mindy: Website | Twitter | Facebook


Mindy, thank you so much for stopping by the blog and sharing your thoughts!

Everyone, be sure to check out the rest of the tour schedule and the giveaway below. But most importantly, be sure to pre-order THE FEMALE OF THE SPECIES!


Week 1:

Week 2:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

31 comments:

  1. I did my high school thesis on Rape Culture, and I am happy that I did. Like Mindy said, girls are exposed to this at such a young age now, it is just right there for them to see. Its acceptable. And it should be the opposite. As far at the van I am happy that Mindy finally took action, imagine that family's reaction when they finally got to their car and saw what was scrawled on it. Especially the fact that they had daughters too? The whole event disgusts me. This is such a great and thought inducing post. Thank you for sharing with us!

    Amber ❤ The Book Bratz

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    1. That's so cool that you did your thesis on Rape Culture. It's definitely a topic that needs to be addressed more often. I didn't think about how often I've seen things like the van Mindy is referring too and like the others she's mentioned, I usually just roll my eyes and move on, and I've never thought about it this way before. This post is definitely eye-opening.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. I too am happy that this was erased from the van. Whoever drew on this has mental issues not to mention maturity issues. This is lack of respect for someone else. Unfortunately, wiping the van probably didn't really erase the marks--the scrawlings would have scratched the paint and may become visible again later.

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    1. I think that the drawings must have been made in dust on a window of the car. You're definitely right about the person who drew it in the first place though.

      Thank you for stopping by!

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  3. Well I'm glad Mindy erased it. This is why our society is sad, and not just about rape culture. So many things happen and people just walk by and ignore it. Shame.

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    1. So am I. It really is a shame, and I have to admit that I've done this, too. Not because I didn't think any thing of it but because I'm used to it, especially living in NYC. This kind of thing is everywhere, it's so messed up.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  4. Wow, that's so interesting. It's great that Mindy took the initiative to erase it. It sucks that all of this is seen as the norm. And now, the victim suffers a lot, yet the abuser walks free. I think more books should be out there for teens, carrying this strong and heavy message.
    Genesis @ Latte Nights Reviews

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    1. It's wayyyy to common how abusers walk free, it's sickening. This book definitely should be taught in schools, it would definitely help the Rape Culture conversation in my opinion. Thanks for stopping by!

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  5. I'm so excited for this book - it sounds like it's going to be such a great read (and I like the cover, it's original)! I haven't read anything else by this author, so I feel like I'm going to be discovering something new!

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    1. It's such a raw and powerful book, I highly recommend it (the cover is badass). This is my first Mindy book but now I definitely want to read more!

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  6. I can't wait to read this book. I absolutely have to have it.

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    1. Everyone needs this book, it's amazing! Good luck on the giveaway and thanks for stopping by!

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  7. I loved this guest post! I've wanted to read The Female of the Species since I first read the synopsis. I think we need more books in YA that deal with rape culture. I applaud Mindy for wiping the offensive drawings off of the van. I wouldn't have hesitated to do the same. As the mother of a daughter and just a woman(or even person in general) I am offended by that and it would be no more wrong to touch someone else's possession than it was to draw and write such a thing on it! The passivity astounds me as well so thank you to Mindy for stepping up and doing the right thing! For every person that doesn't just walk by, we are that much closer to a world without rape culture! :)

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    1. I think this is the best guest post I've ever had on the blog. I definitely agree that everyone needs to read and write more books about Rape Culture. The Female in the Species, in particular, is one that I think needs to be assigned to read in high school and college classes.


      Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. Wow! The female of the species sounds like a good read, looking forward to reading this book. Thank you

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    1. It's a great book that I highly recommend. Good luck on the giveaway!

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  9. I love this post. This is one book that I'm dying to get my hands on (and really sad about it because I have no money to buy it right now, such is life). I seriously get a little more excited about it everytime I see it mentioned. This is such a casual example of rape culture and yet I wouldn't even think twice about it if I saw that scrawled in the dust on a car at this point. I feel like this post was kind of eye-opening and makes me want to make it a point to erase all the dust weenies I see from now on. Wonderful post!

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    1. I hope you can get your hands on it! I think we all always wish for more money for books. Like you, I've seen these kinds of things before and just roll my eyes and move on but now after reading this I'm not sure what I'll do. Thanks for stopping by, cadet <3

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  10. Wow, the van comment! I wonder if the van owners wrote it, or even saw it? If I knew they wrote it, I probably would have embellished ...drew an arrow or knife through each genital photo, and changed "F*** ME" to "I'm a f**king loser".
    Would love to read this book. I need heavy reads to balance out the fluff. I have room for both. Thanks!!

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    1. Based on your reaction, I think that Mindy's book is definitely for you! ^_^

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  11. (Re-do, that had typos galore.)
    And speaking of rape culture and news, I want to add this: some punk who actually rapes someone, but has a promising college swim career, gets almost NO punishment. Yet, an actual OLYMPIC SWIMMER/MEDALIST plays a prank (albeit a bad one, but he didn't rape anyone) and he gets his ass handed to him.
    Then college orientations teach girls "how to not get raped"; why not teach boys "how to not rape"? That's easier, just two words: don't rape.

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    1. Gah! That was supposed to be a reply to my first comment. I give up lol.

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    2. Thanks for the tour stop, by the way. :)

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    3. I have sooo many rants on this topic! Any time I hear about a rapist walk, I get raging mad. Victims are constantly blamed for their own rape and it absolutely boggles my mind. Thanks for stopping by and for all of your passionate comments!

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  12. It's sad that I am not surprised so many people walked by. It's just... sad.

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    1. It is really sad, hopefully that will change some day.

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  13. I'm so excited for this book. I just participated in you BBTC for it and I loved being able to talk with Mindy about it. I'm happy Mindy erased what was on that car. No one should have to see that, as it only promotes rape culture.

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    1. Thank you for participating in BBTC. I'm glad that you enjoyed talking to Mindy, she's awesome!

      I completely agree, hopefully this book and this guest post will open more people's eyes.

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  14. SOSOSO excited about this book. You don't understand.

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    1. Oh, I do. Believe me! This book is absolutely amazing and you have every right to be excited about it.

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  15. Lovely tour post Brittany. <3 Thank you for sharing :D I'm not sure I would really want to read this book. Ack. But maybe one day :) It do look pretty awesome.

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