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.
About the author
Emma Cline was the winner of The Paris Review’s Plimpton Prize in 2014. She is from California.
The Girls is a good example of a well-written inner monologue. We become the main character. We feel what she feels and want what she wants. It’s a great feat of literary skill to be able to bring a character this close to the readers. Despite the gruesome themes in the book, we manage to laugh and cry with the character as she overcomes the obstacles that are put in her way.