Before i start to explain what this book is about, let me first explain what it is most definitely not. I was browsing through the fiction section and this book caught my eye, through both its cover and its title. (yes i know they say never judge a book by its cover, but i must admit that i sometimes do!) Upon reading the blurb on the back i thought it sounded like a nice girly read, light enough for a lazy day in the park. I read the book in a day, and i can tell you that this book is not at all your typical mainstream chick-lit.
So what its about. Three teenage girls and their friendship, their battle through high school life and the things that come with it - drink, drugs and sex. We have the straight ass student who gets too close to her teacher, the popular girl gone bad and her alcoholic parents, and the original badass with a drug-addicted single mother. The three girls call themselves "the Bitch Posse".
The actual book alternates between past (high school) life and present (30-odd year old) life, each chapter cycling between the 3 girls. The effect is that every odd numbered chapter is in the present and every even numbered chapter is in the past, and the chapters of each girl alternate between past and present. Sounds confusing huh? well yes, it is - at first. But after the first 8 or so chapters, which were over all too quickly, you do get used to it.
From the description on the back of the book, we are told 'one night...something horrific happens to shatter their friendship forever'. From the start we are able to see the effect that this terrible thing has had on each girls adult lives, and each chapter in the past takes us a step closer to finding out what exactly it was that changed things so much. Little clues are dropped throughout the book, not so many that it becomes a mystery you want to solve, but enough to make you curious about what it is. The secret is revealed at the end of the book.
However, do not assume that the want to find out this secret is you only motivation to finish the book. Far from it. For me, the book was all about their characters. In parts it can be very dark and/or graphic - for example, the incidents of self harm that pierce many of the chapters, and the violent sex scenes such as the one the book opens with. But this just serves to make the characters all the more real, and the story more hard hitting. From the impression we are given of a confident, know-what-they-want and they sure as heck will get it, trio of girls we see how their lives fall to the extreme opposite end of the scale. No longer as in control and invincible as they once thought they were, we see how their efforts in projecting that image in high school never quite worked out in real life. The characters personalities were so vibrant, and so believable, that i believe this is what truly draws you into the book.
I must warn the easily offended, or the squeamish, that the book does contain a number of sex scenes, many of which are rooted in violence. There is also alcoholism, cocaine, addiction to prescribed drugs, self harm (some parts of which i had to skim over as i am slightly squeamish), all of which appear in social gatherings between the three teenage girls as well as other areas. I can assure you that the book does not attempt to glamrorise or promote these activities, indeed throughout the book we are served with evidence to show that all three girls suffered negative consequences as a result of their actions.
Ill admit that the book is definitely not for everyone. But is it an amazingly good read, and if you are open minded and dont mind the content the book deals with then i completely reccommend it.