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It's Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off to a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives. But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations.
As Anna sets out to find her friend's killer; she discovers hard truths about her friendships, the slippery nature of truth, and the ache of young love.
As she awaits the judge's decree, it becomes clear that everyone around her thinks she is not just guilty, but dangerous. When the truth comes out, it is more shocking than one could ever imagine...
This book scared the hell out of me. For real. And that’s saying something, because I’m not easily frightened
except for clowns – and freakin’ dolls with blank eyes who stare – but who wouldn’t? What do you mean, everybody isn’t afraid of dolls and clowns? Are you kidding me? They’re so fucking weird and unnerving that I shiver when I think about them. Anyway, the fact is, I can read about almost anything without being scared at all, either serial killers or ghosts, yet this book reaches my biggest fear : not being believed by others.
▒ Why did this book affect me so much? ▒
Perhaps it’s because I can relate?
When I was in my early 20s, I was friend with a girl who reminds me Elise (and Anna, for that matter) – not really in their behavior, because we didn’t go out like them (no judgment here, just facts), but because how possessive our friendship became. Quickly, we developed a fusional relationship, and yeah, at first I didn’t realize, that was so subtle. She was nice, we got along well, we had fun, and we let go of many other friends without even realizing it, creating a protecting cocoon around us. When my BF and I started to date, we came across the same difficult adjustments, and after some time, I genuinely thought that we were good. Until she started calling me all the time, and our interactions became filled with jealousy more often than not – I felt it, this urge to swear that everything would stay the same, to promise anything to make her more happy about the situation, while in my heart I just wanted to tell her to leave me the hell alone because I felt suffocated. That was it – we finally stroke a balance – but the fact remains that I’ve stayed scared as hell by female relationship for a few years, until a wonderful friend convinced me that a real friend wouldn’t want to make you feel guilty for being happy. Feeling neglected is hard and unfair, and I’m not saying that we have to forget everyone when we’re in love, far from it. But emotional blackmail is never okay.
Is all this unsolicited personal information helping to understand this book, you’re asking? I don’t know, but I think it affected my perception of the story, showing me, if I needed it, that the way the relationships are portrayed here, how twisted they seem to be, can be fucking realistic, unfortunately.
The truth is, we all would look guilty. When everything can be interpreted in a way or another, how can you be sure that you’re not digging the grave that will send you to jail? That everything can’t be twisted to make you look guilty? You can’t, that’s simple like that – let alone in the society we’re living in, always so saturated by information that we have a hard time deciphering what to believe. And if that’s not the most frightening thing of the world, I don’t know what is.
Throughout the book we suspect everyone, including the main character, Anna, and that’s what gives Dangerous girls so much strength in my opinion.
▒ To conclude ▒
✔ It’s gripping, overwhelming, and I was hooked from page one.
✔ The use of interviews, texts, trial records and other phone conversations make this story look like a true investigation where we, readers, are struggling to follow the tiniest clue and damn how I love it.
✔ The writing is perfect, as it makes everything so fleshed out, whether the characters or the settings – damn, I was there, with them, at every fucking moment they live.
✔ Don’t expect it to be some light investigation – that’s raw, painful to see all these relationships being dissected until each and every one of them look downright toxic.
To be frank, I think I equally loved and hated it – but even if it ripped my heart and depressed me, this dark psychological thriller is just so damn brilliant to be rated lower.