I should be writing about all the sophisticated shit I was made to read this fall in PhD school. This semester was the hardest of my whole life: I taught a gruelling freshman writing course. I enrolled in an insane Narratology class about Bleak House that required stacks of theory and not much imagination. I also wrote a novella. But as soon as I was through with all of that I devoured this novel in one long amazing day and everything was rad again. Long Live Winter Break!
Pamela Erens’ second book, The Virgins, is the sauciest novel about teenagers ever. It’s published by Tin House. It’s set in 1979, at a boarding school in New England. Everyone is on drugs and having sex like real teenagers everywhere. And everyone is angsty sad perfection. The writing is brutal. The narrator is brutal. But it breaks your heart, I swear it does. Buy this for your sisters, bridesmaids, girl crushes, pals.