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The Drifter: A Novel af Christine Lennon
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The Drifter: A Novel (udgave 2017)

af Christine Lennon (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
6222332,785 (3.39)3
Megan Abbott meets M.O. Walsh in Christine Lennon's compelling debut novel about a group of friends on the cusp of graduating from college when their lives are irrevocably changed by a brutal act of violence. Present Day... For two decades, Elizabeth has tried to escape the ghosts of her past...tried to erase the painful memories...tried to keep out the terrifying nightmares. But twenty years after graduating from the University of Florida, her carefully curated life begins to unravel, forcing her to confront the past she's tried so hard to forget. 1990s, Gainesville, Florida... Elizabeth and her two closest friends, Caroline and Ginny, are having the time of their lives in college--binge watching Oprah, flirting for freebies from Taco Bell, and breaking hearts along the way. But without warning, their world is suddenly shattered when a series of horrific acts of violence ravage the campus, changing their lives forever. Sweeping readers from the exclusive corners of sorority life in the South to the frontlines of the drug-fueled, slacker culture in Manhattan in the '90s and early '00s, when Elizabeth is forced to acknowledge her role in the death of a friend in order to mend a broken friendship and save her own life, The Drifter is an unforgettable story about the complexities of friendships and the secrets that can ultimately destroy us.… (mere)
Medlem:joyfiction
Titel:The Drifter: A Novel
Forfattere:Christine Lennon (Forfatter)
Info:William Morrow Paperbacks (2017), 384 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:***
Nøgleord:Ingen

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The Drifter: A Novel af Christine Lennon

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Viser 1-5 af 22 (næste | vis alle)
Loosely based on the Danny Rolling's case, The Drifter by Christine Lennon is an interesting novel about a woman's struggles to overcome a tragedy.

In 1990, Betsy Young is looking forward to the start of her final semester in college. She is still best friends with her former sorority sister Ginny Harrington but her friendship with their other friend, Caroline, is quite rocky. Betsy is going through a bit of a rebellious stage as she tries to discover who she is and what she wants to be. She is eagerly looking forward to graduating early when her world is rocked by tragedy.

With her college boyfriend, Gavin Davis by her side, the two hastily relocate to New York, where Betsy's attempt to reinvent herself as Elizabeth is only partially successful. Following the birth of their child when they are both in their late thirties, Betsy is struggling with her crippling and somewhat irrational fears when she receives an invitation to her former sorority's reunion. Will returning to Gainesville help Betsy finally make peace with the unresolved issues from her past?

Although the Betsy, Ginny and Caroline are from very different worlds, they quickly become inseparable as they enjoy all aspects of sorority life. Ginny is incredibly sweet and easily makes friends while Caroline is rather caustic and a bit of a mean girl. Betsy is outspoken and unrepentant as she refuses to conform to anyone's standards but her own. They are heavy into the party scene and Betsy's love life is a series of one bad choice after another. Betsy's friendship with Caroline hits a rough patch but Ginny manages to keep the peace between everyone. Caroline then leaves when the spring semester ends and Betsy and Ginny enjoy a quiet summer together.

Just as classes are about to resume after summer break, Gainesville is rocked by a series of murders but Betsy, Ginny and Caroline are soon back to their regular life of barhopping and parties. With Ginny and Caroline busy with upcoming rush week, Betsy is at loose ends when she begins hanging out with Gavin. Their relationship is barely beginning when tragedy strikes and in the aftermath, Betsy begins her long habit of running away from her problems. Easily convincing Gavin to move to New York, they each manage to find successful careers even though Betsy continues to avoid her problems with alcohol and drugs.

Beginning with an intriguing prologue in the present, The Drifter then flashes back to August of 1990 in the days preceding the series the murders in Gainesville. The novel continues to follow Betsy's life with Gavin and her inability to cope with the events that occurred in before she moved to New York. While interesting, the story is occasionally bogged down in superfluous details that contribute little to the plot. Despite these unnecessary passages, the novel is relatively fast-paced as Betsy continues to struggle to work through the ghosts of her past. Christine Lennon brings the novel to a satisfying conclusion that has a few unexpected twists and turns during sorority reunion. A well-written debut that fans of the genre will enjoy. ( )
  kbranfield | Feb 3, 2020 |
Received via William Morrow Books/Harper Collins and Edelweiss in exchange for an completely unbiased review.
Also posted on Silk & Serif

The Drifter was a dark and thought provoking novel that took me a very, very long
time to get through. The unrelated details throughout this novel added realism to this novel in a way that made this book perhaps a little too real for me and resulted in many "breaks". The details evoked personal feelings that were perfectly related to the experiences of the three young friends Caroline, Betsy and Ginny who, although completely unalike, were best friends until the shining future of all three women are changed by one horrific night. I felt connected to the characters by virtue of experience from my own university days. My university days were not spent with sorority friends or even really socializing – but I do remember the excitement and expectation of Frosh Week and drunken nights spent in my mid-20s during a time when I still had absolutely no clue who I would be in life (and lets be honest, the only thing that has changed since those days is my excessive drinking habits!). The Drifter is written in a way that anyone can relate to characters that, written by another author, would be completely unrelatable.

Regardless of what other reviewers have said, the enormous amount of “useless” detail I’d learned about the daily life of our narrator only ensured that the ending of this novel could be understood on a deeper level. The mundane details that made this novel an woefully long read also made me love this novel - the characters, situations and their reactions were real thanks to the realism developed from all the boringly mundane details included by our narrator. I don't think the ending would have been as powerful without he long, plodding journey.

The summer in the early 90s that changed everything was just like any summer in the early 90s. The life of our narrator is destroyed and is forever slightly off axis until she can confront what really happened all those years ago.

My only complaint about this novel upon completion is the thematically depressing and dark narrator who, in the beginning is struggling to ‘fit in” and then spends several decades hiding a secret that slowly tears her sanity apart. The dark and twisted road that Betsy takes towards becoming a healthy individual after her friend is murdered was both difficult to read, and frustrating. I saw enough in Betsy to relate to her plight, but not enough to understand why she would keep such a secret for so many years. I also found it difficult to understand how anyone would continue to be in her life during her spiraling mental state, but perhaps Betsy was a better actress than she gave herself credit.

In the end, The Drifter was a depressing and beautiful novel about friendship, personal discovery and the deeply scarring effects of losing someone as a result of murder. Although many cannot understand the anguish of losing someone in these circumstances – I felt Lennon created a realistic and captivating narration of Overcoming and Acceptance.

I would not suggest reading this novel if you are looking for a quick read. The novel drags and spends enormous amounts of time describing Betsy’s life before and after the murder, her life’s development over twenty years and highlighting her deteriorating mental state. Very little happens for most of the book in terms of moving the plot along. The murder of her sorority sister is the major event of this novel, yet when we learn about the murderer and his fate, it is a side line to the drama of Betsy’s life - which hijacks the rest of the novel until the surprising conclusion. I expected the murder, the catching of the serial killer and the eventual closure for Betsy and those affected would be the focus of this story – but it isn’t. The focus of The Drifter is on a specific person and the effects of violent and unexpected crime has on her life.

Was The Drifter worth reading? Yes. Was is dark, depressing and emotional? Absolutely, but it was also inspiring to see the strength of friendship and the perseverance of the human condition.

This book will appeal to readers who enjoy psychological dramas, novels with deep meaning and rich character development. This novel is dark and deals with sad/uncomfortable situations that can be often difficult to read due to the exceptionally subversive writing style. I would recommend this book to readers seeking a "meatier" read with intense meaning and dark subject matter.

 
**Side note: The Drifter is in part based on true college murders and the author's own experiences in a sorority.
  ( )
  trigstarom | Jan 1, 2019 |
Betsy is a smart girl who tries to hide her intelligence. While her friend Ginny is a charming bright light that no person can resist, Betsy seems to do all she can to go through life unnoticed and to be as unremarkable as possible. And where Ginny is a bright light, their friend Caroline is darkness-- moody, self-centered and oftentimes unkind.

These three friends are students at the University of Florida during the summer of 1990 when a serial killer sets everyone on edge. After graduation Elizabeth runs off to start a new life in New York with her boyfriend, but she can't escape the nightmares of her past.

This book came along at just the right time. I've been in a bit of a reading slump for a few months, finding it hard to get excited about reading anything, and constantly distracted. This book was a bit of fresh air to clean my reading palate and hopefully get me recommitted once again.

I enjoyed the author’s debut novel. She has an easy-to-read writing style, and good character development. I don’t know whether any of the characters were really “mysteries” to me. The author left me feeling as if I knew the them. While Betsy was likable enough, I think that her boyfriend/husband Gavin was probably my favorite. Sweet and unassuming and very accommodating and understanding, he is the ultimate mate or friend.

I liked how easy this story was to read, as my brain isn't wanting to be challenged right now. I just want to enjoy an easy read and not have to struggle with symbolism, metaphors and big vocabulary words. Plus a good portion of the story took place in my home state of Florida, so I felt at home in the story.

My final word: Sometimes I was left a little confused over what this story wanted to be: a coming-of-age story about a rootless young woman finding her place in the world, or a murder mystery "whodunit". However it didn't really bother me too much. I was engaged and it kept me wanting to read on, which is the most difficult thing with someone like me who is so easily distracted. The story could be a little light and at times "flimsy" in its structure, confused and sometimes read a bit like a young adult novel. However overall I did really enjoy it, and I would definitely read this author again. I think this would make a great summer beach read, for those dreaming of warmer days ahead! ( )
  nfmgirl2 | Dec 22, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is the story of a traumatized woman who cannot let go of the guilt that she feels over the murder of her best friend 20 years ago.

Elizabeth is a fearful mom to pre-schooler Remi. She can't let go of her watchful perch after dropping Remi off every day at her NYC pre-school, to the point where Remi is in danger of getting kicked out of the school due to Elizabeth's unnatural watchfulness and fearful nature.

But what has made Elizabeth this way? Flashback to 20 years ago and "Betsy" is a college student pledging a sorority in Florida. Her best friend Ginni is letting Betsy crash at her place through the summer until Ginni's roommate Caroline comes back to school. All three girls are sorority members, and Ginni and Caroline love the sorority life, however Betsy is seriously considering quitting the sisterhood.

When Betsy eventually quits the sorority and moves into a different apartment, the girls remain friends, although Caroline is caustic and just plain mean sometimes, and Ginni and Betsy are the true best friends of the three.

College life goes on for the girls until college cutie, and known campus drug dealer, Gavin walks into Betsy's workplace one day and they realize they have an interest in each other. The first weekend they spend together will be the start of the rest of their lives, even though they don't realize it in the beginning.

Betsy decides the stress of leaving the sorority combined with the delay of the school year due to a serial killer rampaging around killing local women is just too much and decides she wants to get out of Florida for the weekend, and Gavin is up for a road trip.

While Gavin and Betsy are frolicking together secluded away from the rest of their friends, tragedy strikes back on campus. Betsy can't deal with how close the serial killer has gotten, and makes a rash decision to leave school and move back in with her mom.

Fast forward years later, and Gavin and Betsy are struggling lovers eeking out a living in a cheap apartment in Manhattan, living the dream, leaving their old lives behind. Their relationship has ups and downs, their jobs have ups and downs. Real life, pretty much. Until one day they get pregnant and sh*t just got real for Betsy.

She has to quit her drinking, drugging and staying out all night with no memory of what happened. Maybe a baby is just what she needed. Until something brings her back to the events the serial killer perpetrated in Florida 20 years ago, and Betsy has to decide how to deal with her lingering issues.

This book is well-written and tells an interesting story, even if it does take an ultra-long time to get through the flashback portion that explains why she acts the way she does in the beginning of the story that is present day.

I enjoyed the story, and the ending had a bit of a twist that I didn't see coming. I won this book via LibraryThing. ( )
  mandersj73 | Aug 23, 2017 |
I filled this one under ok books to read when there isn't anything better on your nightstand. ( )
  ChrisWay | Aug 22, 2017 |
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Megan Abbott meets M.O. Walsh in Christine Lennon's compelling debut novel about a group of friends on the cusp of graduating from college when their lives are irrevocably changed by a brutal act of violence. Present Day... For two decades, Elizabeth has tried to escape the ghosts of her past...tried to erase the painful memories...tried to keep out the terrifying nightmares. But twenty years after graduating from the University of Florida, her carefully curated life begins to unravel, forcing her to confront the past she's tried so hard to forget. 1990s, Gainesville, Florida... Elizabeth and her two closest friends, Caroline and Ginny, are having the time of their lives in college--binge watching Oprah, flirting for freebies from Taco Bell, and breaking hearts along the way. But without warning, their world is suddenly shattered when a series of horrific acts of violence ravage the campus, changing their lives forever. Sweeping readers from the exclusive corners of sorority life in the South to the frontlines of the drug-fueled, slacker culture in Manhattan in the '90s and early '00s, when Elizabeth is forced to acknowledge her role in the death of a friend in order to mend a broken friendship and save her own life, The Drifter is an unforgettable story about the complexities of friendships and the secrets that can ultimately destroy us.

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