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From Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
The sense of foreboding in Boren's slender debut is palpable. Girls in Peril imagines a single summer in the lives of a quintet of adolescent girls in 1970s Wisconsin, as they frolic in the stifling heat. Whether they're running around the neighborhood lawns, sleeping over at each other's homes (and sneaking out at night, too), jumping rope, eavesdropping on their parents, or playing pranks on their neighbors, their games are not as innocent as they might at first appear. In fact, sometimes they contain a frightening element of risk.
The devotion of the girls to each other carries the weight of adolescent angst. When one girl leaves town for two weeks, her absence sends a pang of longing and a ripple of restlessness through the other girls. Boren is an exceptionally talented writer, and in her short work, the moment when childhood recedes into memory and the bonds of your friendship are tested is stunningly realized. Her powers of description are so apt, readers will slap at imaginary mosquitoes as they turn the pages and nod in remembrance as the girls experience their burgeoning sexuality with confusion and a desire they cannot yet name. Haunting in its familiarity, Girls in Peril explores one solitary season -- marked not only by loss but by possibility -- and the acceptance of change. (Fall 2006 Selection)