Older but never wiser, it can be exhausting always rooting for these female anti-heroes. When left to their own devices they often end up in crisis, but these monsters are fun to read about even when they're the problem. It's them.
Maeve Fly by C.J. Leede
By day, Maeve Fly works at the happiest place in the world as every child's favorite ice princess. By the neon night glow of the Sunset Strip, Maeve haunts the dive bars with a drink in one hand and a book in the other, imitating her misanthropic literary heroes. But when Gideon Green - her best friend's brother - moves to town, he awakens something dangerous within her, and the world she knows suddenly shifts beneath her feet. Untethered, Maeve ditches her discontented act and tries on a new persona. A bolder, bloodier one, inspired by the pages of American Psycho. Step aside Patrick Bateman, it's Maeve's turn with the knife.
The New Me by Halle Butler
Thirty-year-old Millie just can't pull it together. Misanthropic and morose, she spends her days killing time at a thankless temp job until she can return home to her empty apartment, where she oscillates wildly between self-recrimination and mild delusion, fixating on all the little ways she might change her life. Then she watches TV until she drops off to sleep, and the cycle begins again. When the possibility of a full-time job offer arises, it seems to bring the better life she's envisioning, one that involves nicer clothes, fresh produce, maybe even financial independence, within reach. But with it also comes the paralyzing realization, lurking just beneath the surface, of just how hollow that vision has become. Darkly hilarious and devastating, The New Me is a dizzying descent into the mind of a young woman trapped in the funhouse of American consumer culture.
Yellowface by R.F. Kuang
What's the harm in a pseudonym? Bestselling sensation Juniper Song is not who she says she is, she didn't write the book she claims she wrote, and she is most certainly not Asian American. Authors June Hayward and Athena Liu were supposed to be twin rising stars: same year at Yale, same debut year in publishing. But Athena's a cross-genre literary darling, and June didn't even get a paperback release. Nobody wants stories about basic white girls, June thinks. So when June witnesses Athena's death in a freak accident, she acts on impulse: she steals Athena's just-finished masterpiece, an experimental novel about the unsung contributions of Chinese laborers to the British and French war efforts during World War I. So what if June edits Athena's novel and sends it to her agent as her own work? So what if she lets her new publisher rebrand her as Juniper Song--complete with an ambiguously ethnic author photo? Doesn't this piece of history deserve to be told, whoever the teller? That's what June claims, and the New York Times bestseller list seems to agree. But June can't get away from Athena's shadow, and emerging evidence threatens to bring June's (stolen) success down around her. As June races to protect her secret, she discovers exactly how far she will go to keep what she thinks she deserves.
Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh
Dreaming of life in the city while caring for her alcoholic father and working in a 1960s boys' prison, a disturbed young woman is manipulated into committing a psychologically charged crime during the holiday season.
Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff
At age twenty-two, Lotto and Mathilde are tall, glamorous, madly in love, and destined for greatness. A decade later, their marriage is still the envy of their friends, but with an electric thrill we understand that things are even more complicated and remarkable than they have seemed.
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
On the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary, Nick's wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police immediately suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him, that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they aren't his. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone. So what really did happen to Nick's beautiful wife?
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
Offers a new translation of Flaubert's classic tale, in which the title character turns to spending and a series of affairs to combat the boredom of married life and, heartbroken and crippled by debts, takes drastic action that results in tragedy.
Boy Parts by Eliza Clark
Irina obsessively takes explicit photographs of the average-looking men she persuades to model for her, scouted from the streets of Newcastle. Placed on sabbatical from her dead-end bar job, she is offered an exhibition at a fashionable London gallery, promising to revive her career in the art world and offering an escape from her rut of drugs, alcohol, and extreme cinema. The news triggers a self-destructive tailspin, centred around Irina's relationship with her obsessive best-friend, and a shy young man from her local supermarket who has attracted her attention.
A Certain Hunger by Chelsea G. Summers
Food critic Dorothy Daniels loves what she does. Discerning, meticulous, and very, very smart, Dorothy's clear mastery of the culinary arts make it likely that she could, on any given night, whip up a more inspired dish than any one of the chefs she writes about. Dorothy loves sex as much as she loves food, and while she has struggled to find a long-term partner that can keep up with her, she makes the best of her single life, frequently traveling from Manhattan to Italy for a taste of both. But there is something within Dorothy that's different from everyone else, and having suppressed it long enough, she starts to embrace what makes Dorothy uniquely, terrifyingly herself. Recounting her life from a seemingly idyllic farm-to-table childhood, the heights of her career, to the moment she plunges an ice pick into a man's neck on Fire Island, Dorothy Daniels show us what happens when a woman finally embraces her superiority.
Nightbitch by Rachel Yoder
An artist turned stay-at-home mom becomes convinced that she is turning into a dog and, as her symptoms intensify, she struggles to keep her alter-canine-identity a secret, until she meets a group of mothers who may also be more than what they seem.
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