Totally bummed, when I had such high hopes for this book. It read more like a teenager trying to sum up Helter Skelter, borrowing some big words from the thesaurus, and not caring as long as they at least score a C. On the bright side, I read a library copy so I'm not out $$ or credits!
The Girls is a debut novel that is being widely touted for gorgeous prose and amazing insight. That's what the givers of awards and accolades say, with endless gushing.
My thoughts are that Cline's prose is merely a thesaurus rearranged, words used more for their length and unfamiliarity rather than for any precise meaning or emotion they might convey. The words and the clueless characterizations--does Cline really know so little about the 60's?--make Evie's sad story heartless and mechanical. A troubled teen rejects her mother (who is undergoing the stereotypically magical 60's transformation from wife/mother to irresponsible free spirit) and latches on to a Manson-esque man and his pseudo family. Pretty much everyone knows where things go from there. There is sex, there are drugs, some rock and roll, and murder. Evie survives it all, survives her adolescence, but learns nothing, can salvage nothing. That's how I felt at the end of this book.