Wilder Girls (Paperback)
Summer 2019 Kids Indie Next List
“Set at a girls boarding school off the coast of Maine, Wilder Girls explores the lengths to which a group of teen girls will go to survive their own mutating bodies and the vicious wilderness on the island where they are quarantined due to a mysterious contagion called the Tox. Unapologetically brutal, this feminist horror story is both a mystery unraveling and an action-packed thriller, showing humanity’s desperation as the girls try to survive and save those they love most. A stunning debut by a powerful new voice.”
— Hanna Yost, Northshire Saratoga, Saratoga Springs, NY
Wilder Girls is a science fiction thriller, set at a girl's boarding school in a mutating, gone-wild forest on an island off the coast of Maine. This book is totally pulse-pounding, but it fills every breath with real, raw emotions. Rory Power's skillful and shifting prose gives such distinct voices to every one of these multifaceted, engaging characters, especially the friendship-driven, guilt-ridden protagonist.— Julia
There are about 60 people left at the Raxter School for Girls 18 months after the Tox has taken over. Girls have grown gills, lost their eyes, and most have been killed off. Since then it has been put under quarantine, and outside of the school's property is a dangerous jungle that no one dares to enter. When one of the girls, Byatt, suddenly goes missing following a Tox-induced flare-up, Hetty will stop at nothing to find her best friend and bring her back. Rory Power has written a phenomenal survival story that will suck you into the world immediately. It's one of those book that you casually pick up and when you finally look away you realize that hours have gone by.— Colleen
This pulse-pounding science fiction thriller touches on survival, feminism, friendship, and environmentalism at a girls' boarding school in a dangerous, mutating forest. Rory Power's writing gives a distinct voice to every one of these multi-faceted, engaging characters. Her skillful and shifting prose fills every breath with real emotion.— From Julia recommends
"The perfect kind of story for our current era."—Hypable
Featured in Vulture’s "11 Books to Read If You Already Miss Yellowjackets"!
From the author of Burn Our Bodies Down, a feminist Lord of the Flies about three best friends living in quarantine at their island boarding school, and the lengths they go to uncover the truth of their confinement when one disappears. This fresh debut is a mind-bending novel unlike anything you've read before.
It's been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty's life out from under her.
It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don't dare wander outside the school's fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything.
But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there's more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true.
And don't miss Rory Power's second novel, Burn Our Bodies Down!
Praise for Wilder Girls:
4 STARRED REVIEWS!
"Take Annihilation, add a dash of Contagion, set it at an all-girls' academy, and you'll arrive at Rory Power's occasionally shocking and always gripping Wilder Girls."--Refinery29
"This thrilling saga...is sure to be one of the season's most talked-about books, in any genre."--EW
"Fresh and horrible and beautiful....readers will be consumed and altered by Wilder Girls."--NPR
A New York Public Library Best Book of the Year
★ "Power's evocative, haunting, and occasionally gruesome debut will challenge readers to ignore its bewitching presence." —Booklist, starred review
★ "This gritty, lush debut chronicling psychological and environmental tipping points...weaves a chilling narrative that disrupts readers' expectations through an expertly crafted, slow-burn reveal of the deadly consequences of climate change....Part survival thriller, part post-apocalyptic romance, and part ecocritical feminist manifesto, a staggering gut punch of a book." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
★ "An ode to empowering women and a testament to the strength of female bonds....Far more than just an unsettling horror story, this powerful debut novel about a strange disease at an all-girls boarding school explores female empowerment, friendship and survival with tenacity and brilliance." —Shelf Awareness, starred review
★ “Electric prose, compelling relationships, and visceral horror illuminate Power’s incisive debut...[and its] environmental and feminist themes are resonant, particularly the immeasurable costs of experimentation on female bodies, and the power of female solidarity and resilience amid ecological and political turmoil.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Tightly coiled narration moves between quietly reserved to vividly but coldly detailed, doubling the horror." —Bulletin
"Your new favorite book." —Cosmopolitan
“Everything about this thrilling, unnerving debut will make you want to immediately read it. For fans of Mindy McGinnis and Gillian French.” —Paste
“Wilder Girls is so sharp and packs so much emotion in such wise ways. I’m convinced we’re about to witness the emergence of a major new literary star.” —Jeff VanderMeer, author of the New York Times bestseller Annihilation
"Wilder Girls is the bold, imaginative, emotionally wrenching horror novel of my dreams—one that celebrates the resilience of girls and the earthshaking power of their friendships. An eerie, unforgettable triumph." —Claire Legrand, New York Times bestselling author of Furyborn
“A nightmarish survival story that’s as much literary fiction as it is young adult...I couldn’t look away." —Casey McQuiston, New York Times bestselling author of Red, White, and Royal Blue
"The eeriness of Raxter Island permeates every scene, and Rory Power's characters are fierce and honest, blazing from the pages. This is a groundbreaking speculative story—brutal and beautiful, raw and unflinching. I adored this book." —Emily Suvada, author of This Mortal Coil
"A feminist, LGBT+, sci-fi-horror story with all the tantalizing elements of gore, mystery, war, and love you can ask for. Real, flawed, brave girls against a world gone mad. A shudderingly good read!” —Dawn Kurtagich, author of Teeth in the Mist