The Girls (Emma Cline)

The Girls 26893819
Emma Cline
Random House

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, and to that moment in a girl’s life when everything can go horribly wrong.

The Girls, by Emma Cline is not what you’d expect from a book that’s supposed to be about cults. It’s actually a coming-of-age story, the life of Evie Boyd, a young teenager in 1969 who makes  the wrong choices during a dark, fascinating summer.

The writing was beautiful, the pages flew and I was thoroughly captivated. It’s not similar to anything I’ve read before. To be honest, characters were mostly unlikable and you can’t really understand how anyone could be drawn into that group… but Evie tells it like it was the only option for her.

A bit disturbing because of their way of living, but I thought it would focus more on the murders (this is based on the Manson murders, after all). On the contrary, this is more of a story about a young girl who is so alone and weak that does whatever it takes to feel noticed and loved. Even if it’s hanging out with a cult and doing weird stuff for their charismatic leader: Russell.

One thing I want to say: I think the present chapters weren’t really necessary. I think I’d have liked it more if the whole story was completely set in the past, in the year 1969. It was an interesting era and I’m always searching for more stories like this one.

If you’re looking for a strange, captivating story that takes its time and is unique and fresh, I’d recommend this book. Keep in mind that it won’t be for everyone.


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In a past life, I was probably a tortured police detective with a dark and traumatic past. Right now, however, I'm just a twenty-something bookworm who loves listening to old songs and watching 90s movies. I enjoy mystery and crime, southern coming of age stories and historical fiction set in the last century.

13 thoughts on “The Girls (Emma Cline)

  1. I’ve wanted to read this book for so long! And all the reviews I’ve been reading have been encouraging me to do so :p Great review Annie 🙂


  2. I’ve read this book and I agree with you! I don’t think we needed to see her in the present so much and I almost felt like those chapters were supposed to set up for a turn. Like “this is how I remember it but was that really how it happened?”


  3. Great review! I’ll be reading this soon, although the reviews I’ve seen have disappointed me a little – I thought it would be more about the murders too. However, I’m glad to hear you think it’s a good read!


    1. Yes, don’t expect a mystery, this is not one… You know what, I liked it when I was reading it but it’s been a day and haven’t thought about it at all. Weird haha

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Me llama mucho la atención ahora este libro, porque yo cuanto mas raro mejor. #DontJudge hahahhahah En serio, me has dejado en vilo, otro para la TBR LIST, como si no estuviese hasta los topes ya hahhaha mil besos bonita!


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