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The Girls
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June 2017: Coming of Age > The Girls by Emma Cline - 4.5 Stars

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Regina Lindsey | 946 comments Inspired by the Mason family events, Evie is attracted to a cult run by Russell when she encounters Suzanne at a time that Evie's relationship with her best friend has deteriorated and her parents get divorced. While losing her father in her daily life is painful, the changes in her mother compound Evie's feelings of abandonment and Evie's intersection with Suzanne's life comes at a time when Evie is vulnerable enough to get sucked into the cult.

I used to read a lot on the cults and that included the Mason family. I'm often underwhelmed by fictional accounts based on actual events. Even though this is more inspired by events than based on the Mason family I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Cline's account. In the book Evie is a lonely adult looking back on her time with Russell and the cult. This gives Evie the ability to be objective about how events unfolded. Cline is able to portray a very conflicted young girl through Evie's memory and my heart really went out to her as she dealt with all things a teenage girl typically feels but compounded by feelings of abandonment and unloved. My heart continued to break for her as she tries to reclaim a "normal" life and to see that even though she felt Suzanne gave her a gift in the moments before the murder she never really gets over those feelings from her childhood.

The book really moved me.


LibraryCin | 3794 comments Regina wrote: "I'm often underwhelmed by fictional accounts based on actual events...."

I'm like that with Jack the Ripper.

I haven't yet read (though this one is on my tbr) anything fictional about Manson and his followers.


message 3: by Joi (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joi (MissJoious) | 1702 comments I read this not knowing much about the Manson family, and really liked it. It might be interesting for a re-read now that I've read Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders to see the parallels. But honestly, I'll probably never reread this, lol.


Susie Amiatu | 2971 comments I really enjoyed it too. :-)


Ladyslott | 1873 comments Remember the whole nightmare of the Manson family and actually found this book to be very lacking in it's authenticity of the actual time frame and the horrendous events that occurred that summer. Earned a begrudging 3 stars from me. It felt too detached from the actual events this story was based on. Read Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders to understand th true horror of this crime....


Regina Lindsey | 946 comments Ladyslott wrote: "Remember the whole nightmare of the Manson family and actually found this book to be very lacking in it's authenticity of the actual time frame and the horrendous events that occurred that summer. ..."

I read Helter Skelter ages ago. I didn't think the author was trying to be authentic with the actual crime. I thought she was trying to show how someone could get caught up in a cult, which seems implausible for most of us. But, I understand your point. That's why I have a hard time with many HF set in WWII.


message 7: by Ladyslott (last edited Jun 24, 2017 06:45PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ladyslott | 1873 comments Regina wrote: " But, I understand your point. That's why I have a hard time with many HF set in WWII.
"


I think the difference for me was living through and experiencing those events. I have a hard time giving a pass to those events where I lived through the day to day of what was going on. I think it's easier to read about events - no matter how terrible- that you didn't really experience.. not that they don't impact you but it's very different than experiencing it in real time.


message 8: by Booknblues (new)

Booknblues | 1679 comments Ladyslott wrote: "Regina wrote: " But, I understand your point. That's why I have a hard time with many HF set in WWII.
"

I think the difference for me was living through and experiencing those events. I have a ha..."


You and I are of an age and I understand what you are saying. I know so many people liked this book, but I have been very hesitant in picking it up.

I have so many other books which I would prefer to read.


Ladyslott | 1873 comments Booknblues wrote: "You and I are of an age and I understand what you are saying. I know so many people liked this book, but I have been very hesitant in picking it up.
..."


It just didn't feel at all authentic to the time for me.


Anita Pomerantz | 4755 comments I am with you on this one, Regina . . I just think the story was really designed to focus the reader on what the protagonist was experiencing and her pain. It didn't read like historical fiction, and I didn't hold it to that standard.


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