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Publisher's Summary

A pulse-pounding novel about a small-town business owner found dead and the teenage girl caught in the crosshairs, American Girl is the latest thriller from international best-selling author Wendy Walker. 

Charlie Hudson, an autistic 17-year-old, is determined to leave Sawyer, PA, as soon as she graduates high school - in the meantime, she works as many hours as she can at a sandwich shop called The Triple S to save money for college. But when shop owner Clay Cooper - a man who is both respected and feared by many in this economically depressed community - is found dead, each member of his staff becomes a suspect in the perplexing case. Charlie must work to protect herself and her friends and uncover the danger that may still be at large in their tightknit community.

Best-selling author Wendy Walker returns with another riveting thriller, told through the eyes of an unforgettable protagonist. 

Please note: This audio contains strong language, distressing situations, and descriptions of violence that some listeners may find upsetting. Discretion is advised.

Wendy Walker recently curated a “Chapter and Verse” playlist for Pandora. Visit it here.

©2021 Wendy Walker (P)2021 Audible Originals, LLC.

Wendy Walker on American Girl

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About the Creator

Wendy Walker is the bestselling author of All is Not Forgotten, Emma In the Night, The Night Before, Don’t Look for Me, and the Audible Originals Hold Your Breath and American Girl, with rights sold in twenty-three foreign languages as well as options in film and television.
Wendy Walker recently curated a “Chapter and Verse” playlist for Pandora. Visit it here.

About the Performer

Paige Layle is a 21 year old actor born and raised in a small town in southern Ontario, Canada (she/they). They have been acting for 15 years, taking part in local plays, musical theatre productions and professional commercials all throughout her life—with favourite roles including Timon in The Lion King, Sarah from Company and now, Charlie from American Girl! Aside from acting, Layle also runs her own business being a lash and eyebrow technician, and has a large social media presence educating others about autism, Layle being diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder at 15. Layle has massed 3 million followers across social media platforms with her engaging and entertaining ways of portraying how autism affects her life. She captures others with her honest and raw portrayal of autism, while also being educational, factual and helpful to the 3 million people interested in learning more about autism and issues surrounding ableism.
Layle is thankful that American Girl features an actually autistic actor portraying an autistic character, as they believe accurate autism portrayal in the media is important for autistic people everywhere, and for the general public to understand what autism can really look like.
As an avid routine-lover, Layle enjoys journaling and scheduling in their spare time. She also likes training and spending personal time with her 2 year old service dog, a German Shepherd named Macey.

Wendy Walker: My Story

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What listeners say about American Girl

Average Customer Ratings
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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    3,480
  • 3 Stars
    1,230
  • 2 Stars
    330
  • 1 Stars
    168

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Cringy at times

Story was terrible. I almost stopped listening during chapter 5 when it left narration and went to playing out a scene with background noise. Listening to 2 teenagers kiss was so cringy. Each time the narration changed to that I nearly quit listening, but I held on until chapter 36, with only an hour and 24 minutes left. And I just couldn’t take any more. I’m not evening finishing it.

50 people found this helpful

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Great book!

It kept my interest! Thought the characters were well developed!
I have a short attention span so i give it a great rating!

42 people found this helpful

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This book picks up speed. Hang on.

I can't even begin to express just how great this audio book is. At the beginning I was thinking that Charlie would make me crazy with her analyzing every single thing in her life. Trust me. Stay on this crazy ride with her. The story picks up speed and hurtles to an ending that will blow you away. I'm not a fan of multiple readers but this ensemble is terrific.

32 people found this helpful

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Amazing Story And Narration

I love Wendy Walker’s writing and really enjoyed this book. The story was so well done and so original. The audio production was outstanding. I’m definitely going to listen again!

30 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars

kind of uneven, but solid ending

The story had some very long and boring sections, but the Author sticks the landing. The main narrator is fabulous and is able to easily slide into the sections of the book that utilizes other voice actors to tell the story. Really nice production and some good twists and call backs at the end.

25 people found this helpful

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Remarkable Depth of Character

The author dives deeper into the mind of the main character than most can successfully go, allowing the reader to process her history and present events as she does. Walker also doesn’t overplay Charlie’s autistic qualities to the point of becoming a trope—they are very natural and showcase her duality of being so advanced in some areas and so innocent in others. The story is also multi-faceted and kept my interest all the way through. Plus, the cast and music were both excellent. A great listen—hard to press pause to get some sleep!

18 people found this helpful

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If you enjoy After School Specials this is for you

I'm surprised I bothered to listen to the whole thing; however, based on reviews for this author I was hoping it was going to get better. The writing is designed for Young Adults at best. I do not recommend this and had I purchased it, I would have requested a refund.

16 people found this helpful

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loved it

the best free audible Plus story in a long long time this was so enjoyable that I almost cried because it was over it was easy to follow great listen to Twist at the end was not. predicted

16 people found this helpful

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Like child porn

I don’t understand how anyone could listen to this, or how an adult author doesn’t feel pervy writing love-making scenes between 14-year-olds or describing a mother rubbing the nipples of her daughter. I cannot comprehend how people are not aghast at that. There is no scenario in which it is appropriate to put the sexualization of minors into people’s heads and to talk about their body parts!! Shameful.

15 people found this helpful

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very good

This book was very enjoyable. It was an out of genre pic for me, I found it very enticing. From the struggle of young autistic girl, to the secrets of her mother, I was tossed back and forth with emotion as I navigated their stories.

12 people found this helpful

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  • shine
  • 12-24-21

Held my attention.looked forwardto listening toit

Very well written.A,good story .I shall look out for this author, quite original.Enough suspense to keep you hooked

6 people found this helpful

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  • Win Whiting
  • 12-23-21

Superb

Oh I so liked her. I loved her confusing mind. Really enjoyed the narration. I will definitely look out for others by this author and narrator.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Moira
  • 01-22-22

truly delightful story, with a good twist!

I was genuinely surprised by this book. It's nostalgia in the present, a clever mystery, and truly believable characters. Will be.looking for other stories by this author.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Wilson
  • 01-19-22

Beautiful, heartbreaking and hopeful

Normally I wonder about the trustworthiness of a gushing review. I try not to write them for that reason. However this story, told so beautifully by Paige Layle, deserves nothing less.

The author writes with insight and compassion, whilst at the same time creating a complicated thriller and social commentary.

The main character Charlie is someone I would be honoured to know and I even feel a sense of loss that I won't get to hear from her again. So powerful is the writing and the narration that I forgot this is fiction. I lived every moment with Charlie and fell in love with her as a person.

The stunningly insightful writing about the nature of "humanity", of people and the way we behave was both intellectually and emotionally stimulating. This is a story and narration I will never forget, and will never discard from my bookshelf.

Thank you Wendy Walker and Paige Layle.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Fee
  • 02-01-22

5 1/2*

This was so entertaining, a new author to me. I only had one problem with it which almost made me give up early on, I’m glad I didn’t. It has sections where it’s like a play rather than a book. So you hear car doors open and closing as an example.

I love reading but sadly am no longer able to do that and it took a long time for me to adapt to audiobooks which I now love but will always be inferior to me than the joy of reading and holding an actual book.

Anyway, audiobooks already alter the reading experience as the narrator may use inflections on words to change the way you would have read it yourself, changing your impression of a character for example. I’m very grateful for audiobooks though but if I wanted sound affects I’d listen to a play, I just want someone to read a book for me, a book is not suddenly going to sniff or slam a car door! Fortunately, it didn’t occur too often.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Sue Huggins
  • 01-21-22

American girl

Really struggled to complete this book. In fact I skipped the last two chapters.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • sarah
  • 12-29-21

Great book, gripping all the way through

Really enjoyed this book, really good story and performance. Would recommend to any one

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • jonathan newton
  • 12-24-21

Wonderful storytelling

Outstanding and original story, with a brilliant performance.
Teenager growing up in a sh***y American town, solving a murder case

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-12-22

Thoroughly Enjoyable

That was the first proper Mystery, Thriller, & Suspense audiobook that I’ve listened to and I was very engaged in the story. I kept wondering who did it and the primary suspects I wanted to be innocent.

It was greatly written and I like that it changed from just a reading to a full-on performance. One thing I would say is that I kept forgetting that the main character was meant to be autistic until she kept talking about her seesaw. Other than that I was hooked; though I would’ve liked if she got the boy, yet I think that it was better that way.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-07-22

Murder mystery plus!

Really good book muder mystery yes, but so much more, I will look for more from this author

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-22-22

slightly unique!

a well woven tale with many twists and turns exclamation the narrator, page, doesn't excellent job

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Leigh
  • 06-10-22

All round great

I really enjoyed this audible!
Great story and read well !
Highly recommend.
A great listen

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mel Philpott
  • 01-06-22

Really enjoyed it.

Well plotted story of a small town intrigue and corruption therein. Narrator steady and minimal vocal-fry! I usually read English detectives, Vera, Rebus etc. There's grit and character in the main protagonists, and written to easily form mental pictures of people, places, and situations.

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