Book Review of “The Girls” by Emma Cline
Northern California, during the violent end of the 1960s. At the start of summer, a lonely and thoughtful teenager, Evie Boyd, sees a group of girls in the park, and is immediately caught by their freedom, their careless dress, their dangerous aura of abandon. Soon, Evie is in thrall to Suzanne, a mesmerizing older girl, and is drawn into the circle of a soon-to-be infamous cult and the man who is its charismatic leader. Hidden in the hills, their sprawling ranch is eerie and run down, but to Evie, it is exotic, thrilling, charged—a place where she feels desperate to be accepted. As she spends more time away from her mother and the rhythms of her daily life, and as her obsession with Suzanne intensifies, Evie does not realize she is coming closer and closer to unthinkable violence.
Emma Cline’s remarkable debut novel is gorgeously written and spellbinding, with razor-sharp precision and startling psychological insight. The Girls is a brilliant work of fiction. (from Amazon)
I rate this book a 4.5 out of 5 stars.
*I was given a free copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review)
This book was intense, dark, and mesmerizing. The fact that this was a debut novel, is mind blowing. What an incredible talent Emma Cline must possess to write such a brilliant book. I don’t even know that I can put into words how good this book was. She was so detailed,that I could imagine every single detail she wrote, from how the girls dressed, to how they looked, to the compound they lived on, to the guy that they all worshiped. The feeling of how you do whatever you can for a “friend”, how you feel wonderful because you helped. Without stepping back to look at the bigger picture, to realize that these people are not worth helping. I felt like I lived through this time period with Evie, that I was standing there with her. Not many books transport me like that.
When it came to the end, my heart hurt, and it still hurts, because of the writing style, I can’t stop seeing the horrible deed done in this book. Even so, this book was incredible, and I am so glad I read it. It gave me some serious insight as to what the girls of Charles Manson must have been like.
If you have read this book, what are your thoughts?
“That was our mistake, I think. One of many mistakes. To believe that boys were acting with a logic that we could someday understand. To believe that their actions had any meaning beyond thoughtless impulse. We were like conspiracy theorists, seeing portent and intention in every detail, wishing desperately that we mattered enough to be the object of planning and speculation. But they were just boys. Silly and young and straightforward; they weren’t hiding anything.”
― Emma Cline,