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Perfect for fans of The Girls, this is a bittersweet, honest, and widely acclaimed coming-of-age novel that distills honest truths about American girlhood

Anna has had a miserable year. Everything feels wrong with her life. And rather than stay and face the mess, she steals a credit card and books herself a seat on the first flight out of town to Los Angeles, to crash with her sister. But soon after she lands, cold reality soon dawns on her: Hollywood isn’t the escape she needs. She is trapped in a town full of lost souls and wannabes, with no friends, no cash and no return ticket.

When she’s offered a job researching the murderous Manson girls for a dubious film, she reluctantly accepts – she needs the money. But soon enough, among the fake smiles and glitter-fuelled parties, things turn from strange, to dark, to dangerous . . .

This is not going to be the summer Anna had in mind.

My Favourite Manson Girl is a chilling story about being young, lost and female. This is a story about how girls disappear.


An unforgettable teen heroine - smart, observant, witty, and tough . . . an edgy coming-of-age novel that will appeal to adult readers as well as teens. Anna's voice is as original as it is compelling - and ultimately it's moving, too, as we detect the vulnerability behind her bravado. Umminger's swift, razor-sharp prose makes this a fast-paced read, a lively and incisive treatment of teen-aged girlhood with seriously dark and provocative undertones.
Maggie Mitchell, author of Pretty Is
A razor-sharp commentary on our culture, observed with keen wit from the perspective of one honest and complex American girl. An insightful, original take on the coming-of-age story.
Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Brings [a] resonant cityscape to life to chilling effect . . . Anna is a beautifully crafted blend of vulnerability and spiky cynicism, and demonstrates the importance of looking below the surface.
the Observer
Funny, sad, often surprising, and just damned authentic. I know I won't be the only one who didn't want Anna's glittery-dark Hollywood summer to end.
Emily M. Danforth, author of The Miseducation of Cameron Post
Bittersweet and true, Anna's journey to self-discovery is one that should be widely read.
Booklist, starred review
The most imaginative novel I've read in years . . . It's an incredible book and it's so so important.
Kiese Laymon, author of How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America
Two new novels explore the story of the Manson murders by shoving the ringleader to the side and putting the girls (and girlhood itself) at the center of the narrative: The much-discussed The Girls by Emma Cline, and the less-analyzed, though no less worthy, American Girls by Alison Umminger. Cline and Umminger take a crime that seems impossible to understand, and show the girls behind it being fueled by feelings that are all too familiar.
The Atlantic
Reveals richly complicated relationships among mothers, daughters, and sisters.
Publishers Weekly, starred review
Messy, honest, and unflinchingly real. I can't get this book out of my head. I don't want to get this book out of my head.
Becky Albertalli, author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda