GIRLS ON FIRE de Robin Wasserman

Mise à jour du 30 janvier 2015 : droits achetés par les Éditions Fayard

Robin Wasserman’s first novel for adults follows in the footsteps of Heathers meets Megan Abbott but carves a dark, brambly path all its own

by Robin Wasserman
Harper, 2016

Hannah Dexter and Lacey Champlain recall in their alternating retrospective points of view, an obsessive teenage female friendship so passionately violent it bloodies the very sunset its protagonists insist on riding into, together, at any cost. The story begins with Hannah and Lacey as two breathless halves of the same codependent whole, incomplete and impossible without the other, and unconcerned by the mounting discomfort that their lust for chaos and rebellion causes the inhabitants of their parochial small town. But Lacey has a secret, about life before her better half, and it’s a secret that will change everything…

Set against a backdrop of 90s grunge and small-town scandals, Wasserman’s work explores the impossible dictates of femininity and the cold, hard beauty and danger inherent in adolescence. Simultaneously contemporary novel and campfire cautionary tale, GIRLS ON FIRE is part love story, part tragedy, part horror story and part irrefutable indictment both of the actual ripped-from-the-headlines blood flowing of late from modern teens’ hands and the emotional lacerations inflicted upon the psyche caused simply by being a girl. Wasserman’s work serves then as both story and object lesson, a page-turning thriller by form but more thrillingly, an all-too-recognizable and brutal portrait of certain ugly female friendship truths and the at times catastrophic masks we project upon others, and worse, ourselves, for our own weak comfort. What’s most frightening of all about this addictive excavation of adolescent violence and vulnerability is that we cannot simply cast it off merely as entertainment, thanks to Wasserman’s searing intelligence and unflinching honesty — it reads too uncomfortably necessary to the conversation, and too true to minimize, or ignore.

Robin Wasserman is a Harvard graduate, former book editor at Brooklynite, and has published or has pieces forthcoming in the LA Review of Books, Tin House, and The New York Times. She is also a beloved author in the young adult realm, with over half a million copies of more than ten teen novels in print. GIRLS ON FIRE is her first novel for adults.

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