Set in a small Irish village this gripping novel does not pull any punches as eighteen year old Emma, a queen bee in her social circle, goes to a party one night that changes her life forever. The effect of alcohol, drugs and resulting social media in a present day where equanimity among the sexes still remains a theoretical idea, sees Emma weather her own prejudices as well as those of the people around her.
What made this hard-hitting read memorable for me was that Emma was not a sanitised character but one that was imperfect and authentic. This made hard reading in many ways as we navigated the brutal world of teens and the aftermath of the party that changes everything for Emma and her family.
It is hard to read a work of fiction like this without feeling outraged and horrified but it also saddens me that with great breakthroughs in this day and age we have still quite a way to go to address women’s rights around the world. Not an easy read but o e with many triggers as this tackles the issue of rape and consent, but in my opinion a must read.
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