‘The year’s best debut’ SUNDAY TIMES
‘The best crime novel of the year’ INDEPENDENT
‘Sensational. Gripping, haunting, and beautifully written’ RICHARD OSMAN
CHOSEN AS A BEST BOOK OF 2021 BY THE TIMES, THE FT, THE GUARDIAN, THE INDEPENDENT, STYLIST AND MORE!
‘The biggest mystery thriller since Gone Girl’ ELLE
‘The novel you’ll stay up reading until 3am’ SUNDAY TIMES
‘An astonishing achievement.’ JESSIE BURTON
‘Gripping, beautifully written perfection.’ SOPHIE HANNAH
‘A masterpiece.’ LOUISE O’NEILL
‘Fantastic.’ PAULA HAWKINS
‘Girl A,’ she said. ‘The girl who escaped. If anyone was going to make it, it was going to be you.’
I am Lex Gracie: but they call me Girl A.
I grew up with my family on the moors.
I escaped when I was fifteen years old.
NOW SOMETHING IS PULLING ME BACK…
RIGHTS SOLD IN 36 TERRITORIES
SOON TO BE A TV SHOW DIRECTED BY JOHAN RENCK (Chernobyl)
‘Incendiary, beautifully written debut’ Guardian
‘Psychologically astute, adroitly organised, written with flair’ Sunday Times
‘Terrifyingly gripping’ SUSIE STEINER
‘Beautiful’ ADELE PARKS
‘Incredibly well written, devastating in a good way, and intriguing to the last page’ LIZ NUGENT
‘I was obsessed by it. As close to perfect as thrillers get’ JOHN MARRS
‘A gripping debut’ Oprah magazine
One of Marie Claire, Waterstones and Grazia’s best books for 2021
A Sunday Times No.2 bestseller for w/e 6/2/21
A New York Times bestseller
About the author
Abigail Dean was born in Manchester, and grew up in the Peak District. She graduated from Cambridge with a Double First in English. Formerly a Waterstones bookseller, she spent five years as a lawyer in London, and took last summer off to work on her debut novel, Girl A, ahead of her thirtieth birthday. She now works as a lawyer for Google, and is currently writing her second novel.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
It’s fair to say Girl, A is one of 2021’s most talked-about novels. Abigail Dean’s debut was the subject of a furious scrap between publishing houses, and rights for a TV series helmed by Chernobyl director Johan Renck were already secured by the time of its release. The buzz is all justified: This is a challenging, emotionally rich and utterly absorbing debut. Lex Gracie, a US-based lawyer, is a survivor of horrific abuse at the hands of her parents. Having escaped the home where she was held captive with her siblings at the age of 15, Lex is forced to return to the UK and confront that harrowing past when her mother dies. Girl A is in part a skilfully constructed and beautifully written psychological mystery, and the descriptions of abuse are devastating, but, at its optimistic heart, it’s also a powerful story about love, healing and humankind’s startling capacity for resilience.
Alexandra "Lex" Gracie, the protagonist of Dean's harrowing debut, grew up in an abusive home in Hollowfield, England, from which she escaped 15 years earlier and freed her older brother and four younger siblings. Her father committed suicide the day of her escape; her mother, Deborah, later went to prison; and she and her brothers and sisters were placed in foster homes. Now a 30-something lawyer in New York City, Lex returns to England after she learns Deborah has died of cancer. Deborah has made Lex the executor of her estate, which includes the Hollowfield house. Lex wants to turn the "house of horrors" into a community center, but she needs approval from each of her siblings to do so. Meanwhile, her identity as Girl A, as she was identified in the press at the time of her escape, resurfaces, forcing her to recollect the abuse and negligence they all endured from their parents. The frequent and ambiguous narrative shifts from past to present can be hard to follow, but the author skillfully brings the complicated relationships among the siblings as well as the secrets they share into dramatic relief. This assured psychological thriller marks Dean as a writer to watch.
A good read!
A good read, looking forward to the next one. Kept me gripped.
Amazingly written, absolutely fantastic book. Can’t wait to read more of Abigail’s work
I almost stopped the the first chapter - so happy I didn’t. Brilliant!!