The Girls is a stunning retelling of the Charles Manson murders by first-time novelist Emma Cline. It's a work of fiction, but one that relies heavily on the history of Charles Manson and his horrifying power over young women. Told from the point of view of Evie, a young girl who falls in with a group of reckless nomads led by a "genius" named Russell in 1969 Bay Area. Evie falls in love with one of Russell's protgs, Suzanne, and she's lured into life at "the ranch" - where Russell teaches free love and fruitlessly tries to get a record deal from fictional music star Mitch Lewis (based loosely on Dennis Wilson, Beach Boys frontman). The book centers around the events of one night where Russell's girls do his horrifying bidding, which is hinted at bit by bit throughout the book, leaving you just unsure enough until the end about what actually occurred. But at its heart, the book is about being a girl - learning how to deal with attention, wanted and otherwise, and realizing what you might be capable of in a world that doesn't often expect much from you. It's a terrifying read at times, but one that is so well-written you have to complete it.
Mesmerized by a band of girls in the park she perceives as enjoying a life of free and careless abandon, 1960s teen Evie Boyd becomes obsessed with gaining acceptance into their circle, only to find herself drawn into a cult and seduced by its charismatic leader.