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Emma Cline > The Girls | Charles Manson

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message 1: by Lex (last edited Jul 31, 2016 08:39AM) (new)

Lex (likeliterallyliterary) | 194 comments Mod
I don't know much about Charles Manson and after finishing this book I still don't know anything about him. Did I miss something?

Did you go into The Girls knowing more about Charles Manson and if so, how do you think that affected your enjoyment differently than someone like me?


message 2: by J.d. (new)

J.d. Grove | 5 comments I am like you. I went in knowing nothing about Mason. I liked the writing it was very interested, so I finished the book thinking huh? I then I read a nonfiction Mason book.


message 3: by Lex (new)

Lex (likeliterallyliterary) | 194 comments Mod
J.d. wrote: "I am like you. I went in knowing nothing about Mason. I liked the writing it was very interested, so I finished the book thinking huh? I then I read a nonfiction Mason book."

I would have loved if this felt like a non fiction to me but I didn't feel there was enough "insider" information. Like I mentioned above, I don't feel I've gained any new factual information about cults, Charles Manson, etc. *sigh*


message 4: by Roxanne (new)

Roxanne | 75 comments I went into this knowing a ton about Charles Manson, and I was very disappointed with the book. I think even though this was a fictional account, the author didn't get close to the mystique of Manson, and the hold he had over his followers I just didn't feel that at all. So I would say for me it lowered my rating of the book a tad.


message 5: by Lex (new)

Lex (likeliterallyliterary) | 194 comments Mod
Roxanne wrote: "I went into this knowing a ton about Charles Manson, and I was very disappointed with the book. I think even though this was a fictional account, the author didn't get close to the mystique of Mans..."

Oh, thats interesting. I can understand why it was disappointing to readers who already know about Manson and her following. I'm sure you could pinpoint facts that could have given this book some justice during certain scenes.

Could you tell us some of the facts you know about Charles Manson that you didn't feel through the book? What are readers who don't know much about Manson missing that could have made their experience better?

How could Cline have hit the mark of writing the mystique of Manson?


message 6: by Roxanne (last edited Aug 29, 2016 09:21AM) (new)

Roxanne | 75 comments She made him seem like just a creepy sex perv... which he was, but he was also extremely charismatic and the majority of the girls had more than bored little rich girl problems. He created a sense of family and freedom so that by the time people starting dying even within the group, the core of the family was solid. She completely missed the cult aspect and vibe in the story. I think if she had hit those points the book would have been amazing.

I don't even feel fictionally i understand why any of the girls participated in the murders except they were evil. That may be true, but i highly doubt any of the real girls would have killed anyone if not for Charlie.

If she would have had a better main character and we understood why and what she was looking for that she found with the group then the mystique would have translated better.


message 7: by Lex (new)

Lex (likeliterallyliterary) | 194 comments Mod
Roxanne wrote: "She made him seem like just a creepy sex perv... which he was, but he was also extremely charismatic and the majority of the girls had more than bored little rich girl problems. He created a sense ..."

Roxanne, I think you're absolutely right. Just reading what you think with your knowledge and information of Manson and the cult I can see how it could have shaped a stronger story. I and other readers that don't know much about Manson wouldn't have known.

I wondered since finishing the book why Evie wasn't a stronger character and why Cline didn't give readers a character who could give us these answers. Or why The Girls was pitched based on Charles Manson. I felt mostly mislead because not one, before reading the book, did I hear The Girls was a coming of age story with a bit of Charles Manson in the background.


message 8: by Roxanne (new)

Roxanne | 75 comments I think if she had hit those points it wouldn't have mattered how much you knew or know about Manson, cults carry a lot of mystique and fascinate a lot of people it would been a very compelling story.


message 9: by Lex (last edited Aug 29, 2016 05:40PM) (new)

Lex (likeliterallyliterary) | 194 comments Mod
Roxanne wrote: "I think if she had hit those points it wouldn't have mattered how much you knew or know about Manson, cults carry a lot of mystique and fascinate a lot of people it would been a very compelling story."

Correct, I was implying the cult and not specifically Manson. I should have specified.

It's understandable, I wanted to pick this up for that reason. It included a cult and being loosely based on Manson was the cherry on top because those events actually happened.


message 10: by Roxanne (new)

Roxanne | 75 comments I won't lie, I wasn't initially all that interest until I started reading the Manson references. But I didn't know the cult aspect either.


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