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Girl A: A Novel de Abigail Dean
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Girl A: A Novel (edició 2021)

de Abigail Dean (Autor)

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3992150,144 (3.76)15
Títol:Girl A: A Novel
Autors:Abigail Dean (Autor)
Informació:Viking (2021), 352 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Etiquetes:No n'hi ha cap

Informació de l'obra

Girl A de Abigail Dean

Afegit fa poc perRennie90, MegEynons, Tweets1973, jenniferw88, biblioteca privada, calliepatzke, jeanonam
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Es mostren 1-5 de 21 (següent | mostra-les totes)
I finished this book way faster than I meant to, but I kept reading and reading. Girl A is the oldest girl in a family of children who are kept chained up by their parents. She, Lex, is the ones who escapes and gets them help. We hear about their stories from different timelines and about different children. It is hard even imagining the thought of treating children like that, and reading about it from the perspective of the children is devastating. It's amazing they grow up to be functioning adults at all (most of them, shh), and to be thriving is beyond amazing! I'm not so sure I really liked any of the characters, even Girl A, but she truly was enthralling, as was the story. I don't like the end of the book, just the last 5-6 paragraphs. Even if we're unsure of her path in life anyway, we shouldn't have to be THIS unsure. And the book doesn't explain all her surgeries, other than to say she was hit in the abdomen by Father. Sorry, but the human body is better built than that. So, with those bleahs, I give the book 4.5 stars. ( )
  relorenz1064 | Nov 21, 2021 |
Cults Never Leave You

Those familiar with cults or have been in cults understand that while you can escape them physically, psychologically they can maintain their hold on you for years afterwards, even for life. That’s if you find yourself seduced into joining one as a young or full adult. If you are a child raised in one by parents committed to the cult, the damage to your psyche can be permanent and land you in therapy for life. If you doubt this, just peruse survivor literature.

Abigail Dean’s debut novel, billed as a thriller but more correctly a fictional psychological case study, follows Lex (Alexandra) Gracie as she returns home upon the death of her mother in prison. By all appearances, she had made a success of herself as a lawyer working for a digital company in New York, though her personal relationships haven’t been as fruitful. Back home in England, she relives her childhood, seen in interstitial flashbacks, well handled by Dean, that work to create a whole and extremely troubled individual.

Through this knitting of present and past, readers learn of her tortured family life, led by a father who fails at everything he tries, who focuses on religion, billing himself as a sort of Quiverfull Pentecostal cult preacher who exerts ever more demonic control over a large family of seven children, who range in age from young teens to an infant; a mother who cedes up all agency to him; and a teen brother who participates in the atrocities he visits upon his children, either for self-protection or in satisfaction of an innate cruelty. Dean provides just enough description so readers grasp the depth of suffering inflicted on the children, leaving readers to fill the details with their own imaginations. Her concern is with the psychological damage done primarily to Lex.

Suffice it to say that readers will become suspicious of Lex’s narrative of her contacts with her brothers and sisters, especially the younger sister closest to her, and recognize the tension between her and her older brother, who seems to have emerged well off but untrustworthy and conniving. Dean reveals the truth of what happened in the house on Moor Woods Road, Hollowfield, about two-thirds into the novel, confirming readers’ suspicions of Lex’s shattered psyche. But then that is the whole point of the novel, the everlasting, often crippling, effects of traumatic upbringings, and in dramatizing this the novel is quite successful. ( )
  write-review | Nov 4, 2021 |
This is a psychological family drama which focuses on the effects of shared trauma on the siblings of one family.

When she was fifteen, Lex Gracie escaped and rescued her siblings from the family home where they were held captive and abused. Fifteen years later, she is a successful New York lawyer who returns to England because her mother, who recently died in prison, made Lex the executor of her estate. Wanting to change the family house into a community centre, a positive space for children, she has to reconnect with her siblings to solicit their agreement to the project. The Gracie children were adopted by different people in different regions of the country, and Lex has not seen most of her siblings for years.

Lex is the narrator. During her time in England, as she contacts her siblings, she thinks back to the experiences of the seven children raised by a religious fanatic and his wife. These flashbacks show the physical and psychological abuse to which the children were subjected. There is not a great deal of detail, though we learn they were given little to eat and were kept bound to their beds. The vague depiction of abuse means the focus is on how the individual children have coped since their escape.

As would be expected, each sibling has been affected differently by his/her captivity. Certainly, their ages and the type of (mis)treatment they received have influenced their reactions. For example, Ethan, the eldest son exploits his past and has become an academic who writes about how education can overcome childhood trauma, Gabriel is the troubled one who is in a psychiatric hospital, and Delilah has found solace in religion. Lex takes pain to present herself as smart, strong, and resilient, but her detached, controlled tone suggests that she has built protective walls. Like for her brothers and sisters, there is no real escape from what she endured for years.

Lex has a different relationship with each sibling. Her relationship with Delilah, for instance, is the most difficult; Delilah was the pretty daughter and she manipulated her father into becoming his favourite. Ethan is a disappointment because Lex believes that since he was the oldest, he should have been the one to plan an escape; she describes him as having a “deficit of courage, and a good face for sympathy.” Lex is closest to Evie with whom she shared a room, just as Delilah and Gabriel are close because they shared a bedroom. The dynamics among the siblings are very realistic, especially when certain information is divulged.

Lex’s relationship with her mother is also problematic. She is unable to forgive her mother for not doing anything to help her children. There is some indication that she was a victim of abuse as well and lived in thrall of her husband. Delilah, for instance, has some sympathy for their mother, but Lex’s feelings are clearly shown in her decision to relegate her to an unmarked grave in the prison.

Towards the end there are some revelations that may come as a surprise to some readers, but there are actually many clues, especially in the flashbacks. I found that those revelations only confirmed the suspicions I had formed earlier.

This is not a light read; it is bleak and offers little hope. Nonetheless, it is a worthwhile read because it is realistic and thought-provoking. How would you react to years of abuse and deprivation?

Note: Please check out my reader's blog ( and follow me on Twitter (@DCYakabuski). ( )
  Schatje | Oct 21, 2021 |

This book. Wow. Wow. It’s fictional but it’s probably so real it breaks your heart.

Girl A is Lexi , and she escaped a house of horrors and saved all her brothers and sisters. She was closest to her sister Evie they were chained together , in the same room. Each child is exceptionally smart and gifted. Two of them , are really messed up.
One boy is his father recreated
And one daughter , the prettiest didn’t think it was all that bad.

Her mother has just died In prison and left her the house of horrors and some money. She has to go see all her brothers and sisters to have them agree to make the house into a community center for kids that went thru the same things. A safe haven.

I could prob tell you about each sibling but then this review is a mile long. I will tell you each one is broken down by what happened in the past and what is in the present. So it doesn’t leave you questioning anything

I couldn’t put it down
( )
1 vota amandasgoodbooks | Jul 3, 2021 |
Inspired by the real life case of the Turpin family, this novel tells the story of Lex, a successful lawyer who is called back to England when her mother dies, leaving a house and a small inheritance to divide among the surviving children. Her younger sister conceives of the idea of turning the house into a community center, but they need the rest of the siblings to sign off on the project, so Lex visits each in turn, which awakens her memories of what happened in that terrible house.

This novel was a lot stronger than I had expected, given that this is Dean's debut novel. It's well-paced and with nuanced characterizations of all the various family members, even the parents, who are guilty of egregious abuse. And Lex at first appears like a woman who has it all together, which turns out later to be true. This is a family where the surviving siblings are not okay and there are good reasons for that. I'm looking forward to seeing what this author does next. ( )
  RidgewayGirl | Jun 14, 2021 |
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