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Losing Gemmaby Katy Gardner
Synopses & Reviews
This is the story of Gemma and me: how I lost her, I suppose. I don't usually tell it to anyone but myself;
I save it for the darkest moments.
Losing Gemma, Katy's Gardners debut novel about adventure, losing your best friend, and self-discovery, has been translates into twelve languages and compared to Alex Garland's breakthrough novel, The Beach, among many others. This time, the backpacking heroes are girls. What makes Losing Gemma truly unforgettable, is the read itself; it's an impossibly suspenseful novel that's as gripping as it is psychologically rich. Two young women have gone looking for adventure, backpacking through India—but only one returns. The other one believes it's all her fault. And the mystery behind what really happened during their fateful visit to a secluded shrine compels the reader forward to a page-turning conclusion that's shocking, strange, and haunting.
"[E]xtremely entertaining....The animating mystery in Losing Gemma is a gripping, psychologically resonant one....Gardner wonderfully illuminates the currents of envy and power that disfigure friendships....[She does] an excellent job of capturing a very definite type, one that's rarely been explored in fiction before." Michelle Goldberg, Salon.com
"Gardner's stark setting...heightens the characters' senses and builds uneasy suspense page by page until the surprise conclusion....If the denouement is somewhat slick, Esther's delayed coming-of-age has emotional clout." Publishers Weekly
"[A] strong, atmospheric story that unfortunately falls too often into horror cliché....[Gardner's] rendition of Gemma and Esther's friendship will reverberate with many young female readers....A tragic thriller...saddled with an ending that readers will see coming about 40 pages away." Kirkus Reviews
In the late 1980s, Esther and Gemma — whose friendship is complicated by Esther's beauty and her tendency to steal plain Gemma's boyfriends — take a backpacking trip to India. When they meet up with a third traveler, Coral, things take a sinister turn, leaving Esther with a bad case of guilt.
About the Author
Katy Gardner is a graduate of Cambridge University, and received a Ph.D. from The London School of Economics. She is currently a senior lecturer in Social Anthropology at the University of Sussex. Losing Gemma is her first novel.
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