Robin Wasserman - Girls on Fire - Little, Brown Book Group

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  • Paperback £8.99
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    • ISBN:9780349141312
    • Publication date:05 Jan 2017
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    • ISBN:9781408707128
    • Publication date:05 May 2016

Girls on Fire

By Robin Wasserman
Read by Lauren Saunders and Vanessa Labrie

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A friendship that starts with a tragedy - and ends with a death.

'Like lightning in a bottle...A captivating, terrifying novel and one you won't forget' Megan Abbott

This is not a story of bad things happening to bad girls. I say this because I know you, Dex, and I know how you think. I'm going to tell you a story, and this time, it will be the truth.

Hannah Dexter is a nobody, ridiculed at school by golden girl Nikki Drummond and bored at home. But in their junior year of high school, Nikki's boyfriend walks into the woods and shoots himself. In the wake of the suicide, Hannah finds herself befriending new girl Lacey and soon the pair are inseparable, bonded by their shared hatred of Nikki. Lacey transforms good girl Hannah into Dex, a Doc Marten and Kurt Cobain fan, who is up for any challenge Lacey throws at her. The two girls bring their combined wills to bear on the community in which they live; unconcerned by the mounting discomfort that their lust for chaos and rebellion causes the inhabitants of their parochial small town, they think they are invulnerable.

But Lacey has a secret, about life before her better half, and it's a secret that will change everything . . .

Starting - and ending - with tragedy, Girls on Fire stands alongside The Virgin Suicides in its brilliant portrayal of female adolescence, but with a power and assurance all its own.

Biographical Notes

Robin Wasserman is a Harvard graduate and former book editor, and has published or has pieces forthcoming in the LA Review of Books, Tin House, and The New York Times. She has also written YA novels with over half a million copies in print. Girls on Fire is her first novel for adults.

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  • ISBN: 9781405535809
  • Publication date: 05 May 2016
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: Hachette Audio
Like lightning in a bottle, Robin Wasserman's Girls on Fire captures girlhood friendship in all its shattering intensity. Seldom do you find a novel that so transports you to the dark, febrile terrain of adolescence, when intimacy and connection can turn on a dime to something far more dangerous. A captivating, terrifying novel, and one you won't forget — Megan Abbott
Flicking between points of view, Wasserman is even in her storytelling, sustaining her narrative by slowly revealing the dangerous secrets Lacey is keeping. Wasserman writes with immense energy. As a portrait of a coming-of-age, obsessive female friendship, the novel is captivating — Sunday Times
Convincing and harrowing . . . vividly detailed — Daily Mail
The tumultuous emotional extremes of adolescence are vividly conjured up in this brooding tale . . . This creepy tale is powerful and haunting — Sunday Mirror
This is a white-hot but pitch-black tale of adolescent friendship...Wasserman chillingly reveals how the intense emotions of teenage years can go to the bad — Sunday Express
Robin Wasserman's novel Girls on Fire will utterly terrify you - in the best way possible.... A dark, chilling story of secrets, violence, and female friendship, Girls on Fire will burn in the mind long after you finish reading — Buzzfeed
A suicide brings naïve Hannah together with the town's bad girl, Lacey, who has a secret that will change everything. We couldn't put this one down — Marie Claire
A hypnotic debut about an intense, obsessive friendship that leaves chaos in its wake — Elle
Mean Girls plus We Need to Talk About Kevin plus Heathers equals Girls on Fire. One of those books that make you glad you're not a teen anymore . . . Tragedy ensues in this pressure cooker of a novel' — Glamour
Robin Wasserman's debut fizzes with energy — Good Housekeeping
Wasserman has an affinity for the female rebel, a talent for combining storytelling that has a confessional feel with a plot full of thrills and chills — Daily Telegraph
Female friendship, adolescent or otherwise, has always been fertile ground for fiction. The intensity. The jealousy. The passion. The mirroring. The neediness. All these and more are present in YA author Robin Wasserman's"adult" (Old Adult?) debut, Girls on Fire. Hannah Dexter is the uncool girl at school, mocked and isolated by queen bee Nikki Drummond. Until life takes a bleakly unexpected turn for Nikki, and Hannah finds herself befriended by new girl Lacey Champlain. On the surface they have nothing in common - except a burning urge for revenge. Set in a 1990s besotted with Kurt Cobain, River Phoenix and Doc Martens, Girls on Fire puts Wasserman on course to join Megan Abbott and Louise O'Neill in proving the distinction between YA and OA is utterly spurious — The Pool, Bedtime Bookclub
A deep, dark vision of the dangers of girlhood emerges from this captivating novel. Life changes for unpopular Hannah Dexter when she makes friend with new girl Lacey who rebrands her as Dex and teaches her to wear Docs and like Kurt Cobain. Everything is on the up but not for long... — Stylist.co.uk
Electrifying story about two teenage girls and a mystery suicide — Heat, Our Top Five Reads
One of the most gripping reads of the year. Heady, atmospheric and thrilling, you'll be turning the pages long after you'd planned on putting the book down. And it is well worth staying up for — Irish News
Wasserman has created a modern fable about female adolescence gone horribly wrong. An unsettling cautionary tale of friendships aligned and realigned, alliances made and broken, lives beginning and ruined, this is one of the most gripping reads of the year — Glasgow Herald
Part murder mystery, part love story, this page-turner explores the dark side of the all-consuming friendship between a wide-eyed good girl and a grunge-worshipping rebel — Cosmopolitan
This is one of the most gripping reads of the year...perfect for thriller seekers — Belfast Telegraph, Book of the Week
A captivating study of obsessive female friendship and the angst of teenage emotion — Sebastian Shakespeare, Tatler
A gripping coming-of-age story with a difference — Natasha Harding, The Sun
Heady, atmospheric and thrilling — Independent i
Explores the line where close female friendships can blur into obsession and self-obliteration....At the heart of the dark story is an intoxicating and all-consuming friendship between two teenage girls — New York Times
A perfectly constructed literary novel... nearly impossible to put down...Wasserman does so many things right... it's hard to count them all.... Girls on Fire is an inferno - it's brutally gorgeous, and you know it could explode anytime, but you can't turn away, even for a second — NPR.org
Girls on Fire is a dark, propulsive fever-dream of youth and friendship-a piercing vision of what it means to mistake yourself for who you are in someone else's eyes. I wanted to grab these girls and shake them, sing them lullabies, stop them-but all I could do was keep reading them, relentlessly enthralled by the heat-seeking missile of Robin Wasserman's fearless imagination — Leslie Jamison, author of The Empathy Exams
Focuses on the intense and increasingly toxic relationship of two outcasts. Awkward nonentity Hannah Dexter is excluded by queen bee Nikki and her acolytes and desperately lonely until rebellious new girl Lacey befriends her, citing their mutual dislike of the reigning mean girl. Under Lacey's tutelage, Hannah evolves into Dex, with an altogether cooler wardrobe and an appetite for risk-taking, including involvement with black magic. Lacey, who has several dark secrets, eggs her on, and inevitably, things go too far ... written with great panache and evident sympathy for its subjects — Guardian, 'the best recent crime novels'
One of those books that makes you breathe a sigh of relief that you're not a teenager any more, this is the story of outsider Hannah, who is bullied at high school by queen bee Nikki. Big mistake Nikki, huge. Tragedy ensues in this pressure cooker of a novel that examines the intensity of adolescent female friendships and life growing up in smalltown America...file it under Heathers and Virgin Suicides. — Glamour, May 2016 'New titles we love'
A book so wonderful, so terrible, so nightmarishly compelling that I hardly knew what to say when I finished reading it. Wasserman has wrapped up a love story inside a murder mystery, a promise and a testament inside a confession - and has a title ever been truer? The reader comes away singed — Kelly Link
Like a mini Thelma and Louise as directed by David Lynch, the relationship between Dex and Lacey dances around the death of a high-school jock and the slow undoing of his near-perfect girlfriend. Dark, disturbing and utterly fresh, this is a story to pick up and not put down — Stylist, The Most Addictive Thrillers of 2016
A chilling story of school life and female friendship that starts and ends with a tragedy — Independent, Best Books to Read in 2016
A dark story of a muddied friendship between two girls — Elle Magazine, 'Stunning debuts from the literary world's new power players'
When a loner and the new girl at school bond over their hatred of the popular Nikki Drummond, they transform themselves into DM wearing, Kurt Cobain loving rebels who become the scourge of their small town, which has already been rocked by tragedy. This is Wasserman's debut adult novel (she's previously written YA), which perfectly captures the power and fragility of adolescent friendships — Red magazine, 'The Best New Authors You Need to Know About 2016'
A tale of obsessive female friendship — Irish Times, Books to Watch Out For in 2016
While it is a mystery, the true strength of the novel comes from the honesty of the girls' portrayal — Guardian
ATOM

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It was like a nightmare, but there was no waking up. When the night began, Nora had two best friends and a boyfriend she adored. When it ended, she had nothing but blood on her hands. Chris was dead. Adriane couldn't speak. And Max, Nora's sweet, smart, soft-spoken Prince Charming, was gone. He was also-according to the police, according to her parents, according to everyone-a murderer.Desperate to prove his innocence, Nora's determined to follow the trail of blood, no matter where it leads. But Chris's murder is just one piece in a puzzle that spans continents and centuries. Solving it may be the only way she can save her own life.

Adam Skolnick

Adam Skolnick has written for the New York Times, Outside, ESPN.com, BBC.com, Salon.com, Men's Health, Wired, and Travel + Leisure, among others. As an international journalist, he has visited 45 countries and authored or co-authored 25 Lonely Planet guidebooks.

Alex Gray

Alex Gray was born and educated in Glasgow. After studying English and Philosophy at the University of Strathclyde, she worked as a visiting officer for the DHSS, a time she looks upon as postgraduate education since it proved a rich source of character studies. She then trained as a secondary school teacher of English. Alex began writing professionally in 1993 and had immediate success with short stories, articles and commissions for BBC radio programmes. She has been awarded the Scottish Association of Writers' Constable and Pitlochry trophies for her crime writing. A regular on the Scottish bestseller lists, her previous novels include Five Ways to Kill a Man, Glasgow Kiss, Pitch Black, The Riverman, Never Somewhere Else, The Swedish Girl and Keep the Midnight Out. She is the co-founder of the international Scottish crime writing festival, Bloody Scotland, which had its inaugural year in 2012.

Alexander McCall Smith

Alexander McCall Smith is the author of over eighty books on a wide array of subjects, including the award-winning The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. He is also the author of the Isabel Dalhousie novels and the world's longest-running serial novel, 44 Scotland Street. His books have been translated into forty-six languages. Alexander McCall Smith is Professor Emeritus of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh and holds honorary doctorates from thirteen universities.

Anne Randall

Anne Randall was born in Glasgow and after university taught English in various secondary schools in inner Glasgow. In 2011 she won first prize for crime fiction writing at the Wells Literature Festival. Anne now lives in Glastonbury with her husband, two cats and one dog. Anne's first book in the Wheeler and Ross series, Riven, was written under the name A. J. McCreanor.

Christobel Kent

Christobel Kent was born in London and educated at Cambridge. She has lived variously in Essex, London and Italy. Her childhood included several years spent on a Thames sailing barge in Maldon, Essex with her father, stepmother, three siblings and four step-siblings. She now lives in both Cambridge and Florence with her husband and five children.

Daphne Du Maurier

Daphne du Maurier (1907-89) was born in London, the daughter of the famous actor-manager Sir Gerald du Maurier and granddaughter of George du Maurier, the author and artist. In 1931 her first novel, The Loving Spirit, was published. A biography of her father and three other novels followed, but it was the novel Rebecca that launched her into the literary stratosphere and made her one of the most popular authors of her day. In 1932, du Maurier married Major Frederick Browning, with whom she had three children.Many of du Maurier's bestselling novels and short stories were adapted into award-winning films, including Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now. In 1969 du Maurier was awarded a DBE. She lived most of her life in Cornwall, the setting for many of her books.

Denise Welch

Denise Welch was born in Whitley Bay in 1958. She is an award-winning actress, TV presenter and author of two Sunday Times bestselling autobiographies. Her many credits include Coronation St, Soldier Soldier, Waterloo Road and Boy Meets Girl, to name a few. She is also an accomplished theatre actress.Denise was a panelist on popular daytime show Loose Women for several years.She is married to artist Lincoln Townley and has two sons, Matthew and Louis, and stepson Lewis. She now lives a quiet, party-free life in rural Cheshire.

Elizabeth Moon

Elizabeth Moon served in the US Marine Corps, reaching the rank of 1st Lieutenant during active duty. She has also earned degrees in history and biology, run for public office and been a columnist on her local newspaper. She lives near Austin, Texas, with her husband and their son. Twenty-six of her books are in print, and she won the Nebula Award with her science fiction novel Speed of Dark (also shortlisted for the Clarke Award), and was a finalist for the Hugo in 1997.

Fiona Melrose

Fiona Melrose was born in Johannesburg but has spent the majority of her adult life in the UK, first in London and then in East Anglia. She moved to Suffolk to concentrate on her writing and it is there that Midwinter was conceived. Previously Fiona has worked in academia, NGO's, public affairs and as an emerging markets analyst. She continues to keep a foot in both continents and is currently spending the majority of her time back in South Africa where she is completing her second novel.

Jennifer Egan

Jennifer Egan is the author of A Visit From The Goon Squad, The Keep, Look at Me, The Invisible Circus, and the story collection Emerald City. Her stories have been published in The New Yorker, Harper's Magazine, GQ, Zoetrope, All-Story, and Ploughshares, and her non-fiction appears frequently in The New York Times Magazine. She lives with her husband and sons in Brooklyn.

Kate Ellis

Kate Ellis was born in Liverpool and studied drama in Manchester. Kate has twice been nominated for the Crime Writers' Association Short Story Dagger and has alse been nominated for the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year. Visit her at www.kateellis.co.uk

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Katee Robert learned to tell stories at her grandpa's knee. Her favorites then were the rather epic adventures of The Three Bears, but at age twelve she discovered romance novels and never looked back.Though she dabbled in writing, life got in the way - as it often does - and she spent a few years traveling, living in both Philadelphia and Germany. In between traveling and raising her two wee ones, she had the crazy idea that she'd like to write a book and try to get published.Her first novel was an epic fantasy that, God willing, will never see the light of day. From there, she dabbled in YA and horror, before finally finding speculative romance. Because, really, who wouldn't want to write entire books about the smoking-hot relationships between two people?She now spends her time - when not lost in Far Reach worlds - playing imaginary games with her wee ones, writing, ogling men, and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse.

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Kelley Armstrong lives in rural Ontario, Canada, with her family and far too many pets. She is the author of the international bestselling Women of the Otherworld series, and many other highly acclaimed novels, including the Darkest Powers and Darkness Rising YA trilogies, and the Cainsville series.

Ken McCoy

For twenty-five years Ken McCoy ran his own engineering company. During this time he also worked as a free-lance artist, greeting card designer and after-dinner entertainer. He has appeared on TV, radio and as a comedian. He is married and had 5 children and 6 grand-children.

Linda Howard

Linda Howard is an award-winning NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author. She lives in Alabama with her husband and one golden retriever.

Louise Erdrich

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