The Adults In her ruefully funny and wickedly perceptive debut novel Alison Espach deftly dissects matters of the heart and captures the lives of children and adults as they come to terms with life death and

  • Title: The Adults
  • Author: Alison Espach
  • ISBN: 9781439191866
  • Page: 332
  • Format: Paperback
  • In her ruefully funny and wickedly perceptive debut novel, Alison Espach deftly dissects matters of the heart and captures the lives of children and adults as they come to terms with life, death, and love At the center of this affluent suburban universe is Emily Vidal, a smart and snarky teenager, who gets involved in a suspect relationship with one of the adults after wiIn her ruefully funny and wickedly perceptive debut novel, Alison Espach deftly dissects matters of the heart and captures the lives of children and adults as they come to terms with life, death, and love At the center of this affluent suburban universe is Emily Vidal, a smart and snarky teenager, who gets involved in a suspect relationship with one of the adults after witnessing a suicide in her neighborhood Among the cast of unforgettable characters is Emily s father, whose fiftieth birthday party has the adults descending upon the Vidal s patio her mother, who has orchestrated the elaborate party even though she and her husband are getting a divorce and an assortment of eccentric neighbors, high school teachers, and teenagers who teem with anxiety and sexuality and an unbridled desire to be noticed, and ultimately loved.An irresistible chronicle of a modern young woman s struggle to grow up, The Adults lays bare in perfect pitch a world where an adult and a child can so dangerously be mistaken for the same exact thing.

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      Published :2019-02-02T12:44:54+00:00

    One thought on “The Adults”

    1. by Alison Espach was such a nice read for me. Now that I’ve finished it and I’m thinking about it I realize how good it is. I’ve seen a lot of negative reviews for this book and I can understand why some people wouldn’t like this. The writing takes getting used to it. I personally thought it was beautiful (created a special shelf just because of this book), but it is unusual and it took me first 20% to get into the book. For example, Emily is in the middle of a birthday party, then she s [...]

    2. This book confused and upset me a lot. At the beginning I was like, "This is the greatest, most hilarious thing ever! People should need to be granted a license before they're allowed to write any books, and I should be the official in charge of deciding who can obtain such a license, and I will not give one to anybody except this Alison Espach." I was stunned and amazed and just thought it was the greatest (contemporary American) thing I could remember having read in years.Then things started t [...]

    3. 3,5 stars*Spoilers ahead, sorry!*HEY, GREAT THINKERS: IS THERE A GOD? WHAT IS MOST REAL? THE MOLECULES THAT MAKE UP THE AIR, OR THE FEELINGS YOU HAVE INSIDE YOU?Wow, I'm not the only fucking mess around!That's what I thought a lot, while I was reading The Adults.I expected a classic coming of age novel, where the MC started as clueless and desperate and little bit naive and ended up being successful and full of wisdom and with a family of her own. To be honest with you, the latter was more like [...]

    4. (Yes, there are spoilers.)I heard about Allison Espach's debut novel, The Adults because, as a resident of Fort Greene/Clinton Hill, Brooklyn herself, she was going to be reading at my local bookstore. Her novel--and its heroine, the disenchanted fourteen-year-old Emily Vidal--seem to promise a fresh take on that oh-so-recurrent plotline: Rich Girl from Connecticut Isn't Buying It and Rebels. So I went down to the bookstore and grabbed a copy off the shelf, just to give the first page a test-rea [...]

    5. As far back as I can remember, I've had a preoccupation with older men. Adults. I can remember being 13 years old and putting on a nice skirt to "impress" a friend of my parents, who I now realize would have been in his thirties at the time and married with children besides, a wildly inappropriate choice for a schoolgirl crush. There have been crushes on teachers in high school, professors in college, middle-aged law enforcement officers who are married with teenaged or adult children, now that [...]

    6. Debut novel about an upscale Connecticut town in the 1990s-2000s. Based on reviews, my expectations were not in line with the reality of this book. I expected a tale of the misdeeds of wealthy adult suburbanites as told through the eyes of a fourteen year old girl. While the novel starts this way it goes in a vastly different direction. There is no concise through-plot here. Things are told as an aside, with flashbacks popping up in the middle of random paragraphs. At first this works and is con [...]

    7. I pretty much got back on because of this book. It is so amazing !! The Adults touched me [whoa there's a sentence right there] the way that Extremely Loud and Incredible Close and A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius did. And yes, maybe I do love "every stereotypical book that twenty-something white people like" [as my friend puts it], but turns out I am a twenty-something white person and I la-huved it. Espach's raw interpretation of middle school brought me right back to writing the mos [...]

    8. I don't ever write reviews for books, but this was such a disappointment that it seems necessary. The Adults did have the potential to be a good book - unfortunately, Espach did not realize that potential. It is a pretentious and exaggerated book that had an unrealistic protagonist. As a fellow young adult, I thought I would at least be able to empathize with Emily, but she is such a caricature that this is impossible. The author attempts to shock you at every turn with how grotesque yet meaning [...]

    9. Rarely have I read first novels that are truly captivating, with memorable characters and settings that will endure long in my memory. Even rarer still are those first novels that represent the emergence of a truly original literary voice replete with memorable, truly exceptional, prose. Over the span of two and a half decades, only four first novels have I found quite captivating and notable as exceptional debuts by their authors, who have become since important writers of modern Anglo-American [...]

    10. This is precisely the kind of novel I consistently look for, but rarely find. Protagonist Emily Vidal is caught between two worlds - the world of her teenage existence and the world of the adults. Emily's previously carefree, childish existence is complicated when she witnesses a suicide and begins a confusing relationship with a teacher. We follow Emily as she struggles with her quickly changing family life, barely understanding her parents and grappling with how their decisions affect her. Esp [...]

    11. If I could give this book 2 1/2 stars I would. I think the author did a good job of developing the characters and the plot, I just hated them all. I found the story to be very disturbing. The description on the jacket said it was supposed to be funny. There were a few funny scenes in the book but on the whole it wasn't funny. Without giving away too much of the plot, the main character, Emily, has an affair with her high school English teacher and it seems to be because her father has left the f [...]

    12. Meh. I dunno. I see what the fuss is about--this book is weird, the author says things in a unique way. Woohoo. It's just that I didn't like or understand Emily, not even when she was a little girl at the beginning of the book. I felt like Emily, and everyone in the book really, was just written to allow the author to show off the fact that she writes surprising sentences. Nothing actually connected for me. I felt sad for Emily and many of the characters, but not sad as their pathetic circumstan [...]

    13. I no longer actively seek out books I know I will hate. The anaerobic thrill of speed reading through adjective abuse and gender stereotypes has lost its thrill and now I simply prefer to read things I like and not read things I don’t like. Goodbye, Tao Lin. Adios, Stephenie Meyer. On the other hand, I will still commit to something I’m dubious about. Meet Alison Espach’s “The Adults.” It has a real chick lit walk and talk, as though chick lit was stopped in the bathroom by a tall woma [...]

    14. Though the writing was witty and the plot kept me interested, I was ultimately a little disappointed at the end of this. How is Emily different at the end of this book? What's going to happen to her? It's kind of unsatisfying for a book to follow a character from age 14 to 30 and then just stop when the character's on the verge of maybe figuring some stuff out. Hmph. I did like the twist with Mr. Basketball at the end. It almost made me wish the book were from his perspective, but I guess that w [...]

    15. I think I felt like I had to read this book just because I’d wanted to months ago but could never find it. I expected a well-written novel of manners, relatively enjoyable but a bit on the cold side. That’s more or less what I got, though the writing wasn’t quite as good as I expected, and it was more of a coming of age story. Though the storytelling is a bit weird; time jumps before tracking back were gratuitous, and the characters felt pretty flat and unreal, obviously constructions in a [...]

    16. I am 57% finished with this book on my Kindle, and although it goes against my book-reading and movie-watching philosophy (that if you're more than halfway through it, just keep going until you've finished it whether it's good or not because you've devoted enough time to it already), I am putting it down. I do enjoy the way Espach writes, but the book and I just don't see eye to eye. Maybe it's too provocative, maybe it's just that I have not seriously liked a single charater in this book yet (i [...]

    17. I almost gave this book 5 stars, but I'd like to reserve that rating for books that changed my life. However I loved loved loved this book. I read some of the bad reviews just to see if I was completely off the mark, and it seems like the people who didn't like it took the book way too literally. Reading the first couple chapters I thought, ok, precocious young narrator is smarter than all the adults around her, blah, blah, blah. By about a third of the way through I was making many highlights ( [...]

    18. Emily Vidal is a teenager growing up in a suburban neighborhood of Connecticut filled with adults who fall somewhat short of being just that - The Adults. Emily's experiences can be viewed as normal by some and completely off the wall by others. She shares her experiences with life as she knows it, the confusion of love, sex and suicide with us as she grows into a young woman.Emily is an interesting character who pulls you into her insane world. She has a way of dropping an unusual line out of t [...]

    19. Don't get involved with adults, the kids are told. Everything you'll ever learn, they already know. Fourteen-year-old Emily can't help but be involved - her dad's having an affair, there's a baby on the way, her parents are getting divorced, and a neighbour commits suicide on her lawn. What can you do? The kids are busy performing cosmetic surgery in the science lab, and trying to outdrink their teachers at the school dance. Emily begins an affair with her English teacher, for no particular reas [...]

    20. I was surprised by how much I loved this dark coming of age tale. Emily Vidal witnesses the suicide of a neighbor and begins an affair with an adult. Who the 'adult' is takes on big meaning throughout the novel. Emily and her friends, all on the edge of adulthood, teem with a fury of sexual energy. The suicide is a catalyst of many situations in this novel. Her parents have a monster of a marriage that is slowly dying and creating endings and beginnings in its wake. Emily, lost in the chaos and [...]

    21. I'm not sure where to start with this review. Alison Espach's mastery of the English language is, personally, a source of major envy. She weaves together the story of Emily Marie Vidal from 14 to almost 30, and somehow manages to maintain a uniform cast of characters even when new ones are introduced. Told in thirty something chapters divided into parts, The Adults is a book I will never forget. There's a little Emily in all of us, be it the anxious teenage girl trying to flirt with the boy she [...]

    22. Just because the NY Times gives a book a stellar review, does not necessarily mean the book is worth the read. I downloaded this want-to-be diamond in the rough onto my NOOK because of such a review. I wanted to see what earns high praise from the Literati. After reading this fictional tell all with TMI (Too Much Information) written all over it, I felt like I needed to be bathed in bleach. Perhaps it's my Christian sensibilities that turned me off from this profanity riddled read or maybe it's [...]

    23. I guess I must not have much of a sense of humor because, though this book was full of jokes, I didn't think any of them were funny. Most of the humor was obscure and strange to me. The characters in it all sounded the same. It was like someone talking to themselves. It might have been the reason why I didn't really connect or care about the characters. I didn't like this book much but for some reason, I kept reading it. The book just seemed flat and dull to me but I kept hoping that it would ge [...]

    24. loved the main character, especially early in the story when it was about her childhood. I really identified with her sense of humor. The story was interesting because I really had no idea what the climax would be about. Usually you know the topic of a climax, will they break up or stay together? will they live or die? will they be forgiven or not? this one wasn't very clear. As I got about 3/4 through the story, I kept looking ahead to look for the names of certain characters.

    25. Stick with this one. I almost put it down after 100 pages, because the lists and the narrator's chilly veneer were getting to me. And I almost put it down again when the action moved to Prague, because I felt I was being yanked into another novel. But by the last pages, I was sobbing and feeling dumb for wanting to bail. Espach knows what she's doing, and what she's doing is amazing.

    26. Okay story, told very pretentiously. Looking at the back cover to see who this author is, I see she is quite young. I'm guessing she tried to "wow" us w/her debut novel, but I wasn't that wowed. Tries to be a coming-of-age type book, but done w/a little more provocativeness than was necessary to tell the story.

    27. I absolutely disliked this book. It was not the writing or how the story was presented. That was all very well done hence the two stars. I am just not a fan of coming of age fiction at all. I could care less who slept with who or what freaking drama was in someone's family. That is real life and between my friends and family I have that all sorts of covered, or Lifetimes movies do. I read this book for a reading challenge so please take my opinion of this book as such, I would have never picked [...]

    28. To start off, let me say that I did like this book - I enjoyed reading it, and I am glad that I arbitrarily grabbed it in the library because I was standing in a random aisle and liked the cover.That being said, this book was a bit of a ride. Some of it felt almost Shirley Jackson-ish (think Hangsaman), with a sort of detached otherness placed over the concepts of getting older. I think I got more out of the chapters of the character when she was younger - it felt more defined, and though it als [...]

    29. A kind of modern-day take on Lolita, The Adults is the story of Emily Vidal, a self-aware teenager growing up in suburban Connecticut. Caught in a time of turmoil that reaches beyond the normal turmoil of adolescence, Emily has a prolonged and somewhat matter-of-fact affair with her English teacher and The Adults subsequently revisits their relationship at several key points over the next ten years. What I found most interesting about this book was how much the relationship between Emily and the [...]

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