Dead Girls

Selva Almada author Annie McDermott translator


Publisher:Charco Press

Published:3rd Sep '20


Available for immediate dispatch.

Dead Girls cover

Not a police chronicle, not a thriller, but a contemporary noir novel of the ongoing catastrophe of femicide and the murder of three young women in interior of Argentina.

In this brutal, gripping novel, Selva Almada narrates the case of three small-town teenage girls murdered in the 1980's in the interior of Argentina.Three deaths without culprits: 19-year old Andrea Danne, stabbed in her own bed; 15-year old María Luisa Quevedo, raped, strangled, and dumped in wasteland; and 20-year old Sarita Mundín, whose disfigured body was found on a river bank. Almada takes these and other tales of abused women to weave together a dry, straightforward portrait of gender violence that surpasses national borders and speaks to readers' consciousness all over the world.Following the success of The Wind That Lays Waste , internationally acclaimed Argentinian author Selva Almada dives into the heart of this problem with a reported novel, comparable to Truman Capote's In Cold Blood or John Hersey's Hiroshima , in response to the urgent need for attention to the ongoing catastrophe that is femicide.Not a police chronicle, not a thriller, but a contemporary noir novel that lives in the hearts of these women and the men who have abused them. Almada captures the invisible, and with lyrical brutality, blazes a new trail in journalistic fiction.

"Almada combines reportage, fiction, and autobiography to explore femicide in Argentina in her acute, unflinching latest." —Publishers Weekly, starred review

"An unassuming yet intensely felt narrative. (4 stars)" —The Arts Desk

"Not an easy book, but it feels like an important one – a work of investigative writing about how easily women’s lives are obscured." —The Scotsman

"Part journalism, part history, part autobiography, part relentless nightmare." —Shelf Awareness, starred review

"This is a powerful read...[Almada's] effective use of fiction ensures a deep empathy in her readers which strict reportage sometimes fails to evoke." —The Big Issue

"Almada’s prose is sparse, but the details count. Her ear for dialogue and especially gossip is pitch perfect. Her eye for detail is hawkish." —LA Review of Books

"A tense, precise chronicle that treats seriously a still serious subject." —El Cultural

"You’ll walk away from this book with a vivid memory of where you were, how you were feeling, and what the weather was like on the day that you read Dead Girls." —Books and Bao

"This is not a book that will make you feel at peace with the world, but that is precisely where its strength and persuasion lie." —Translating Women

"The literary quality of the text shines." —Sound and Vision

"The prose strikes a perfect tone – clinical and punchy when necessary, angry and lyrical, brutal yet humanistic." —TN2

"Challenge[s] the true crime obsession in an indirect way. " —Pendora Magazine

"A powerful read, shedding a stark light on the horrors of gender violence." —The Big Issue

"What makes the book compelling is how the author explores issues of domestic violence, state complicity, machismo and family negligence, along with class and social inequalities, in a non-sentimental prose which is all the more effective as result." —Morning Star

"Genre-defying, with beautifully crafted and reflective prose." —The F Word

"The devastating conclusion of the narrator is that the women who survive are unlikely to have made it unscathed but they are lucky ones – lucky to be alive." —NB Magazine

"It is a profound novel and call to action still relevant as activists continue to take to the streets throughout Latin America to decry, ‘ni una más’ (not one more)." —The Skinny

"It’s crisp, bracing, and beautiful." —White Review

"Part coming-of-age, part detective work, partly a web of rumors, Almada’s story fuses a variety of genres to create a work that splits the seams of personal narrative, journalism, and fiction." —NACLA

"Exquisite prose that vibrates with a deep, melodious rage." —The Monthly Booking

"Recounted with a lyrical simplicity that is almost brutal." —The Oxonian Review

"Painstakingly investigated ... imbued with personal connection" —The Oxonian Review

"Fate has in Dead Girls the perfume of a Greek tragedy: immutable, irreversible, lethal." —El País

"Far from the detective story, this is an intimate tale, a certain negative of the autobiography of a young woman looking at other young women and how all of them are perceived by a society where misogyny and violence against them is still an everyday affair." —Pagina/12

"Selva Almada reinvents the imaginative rural world of a country. She is an author gifted with a very uncommon power and sensitivity." —Rolling Stone (Argentina)

"Gripping, shocking and sad." —The Book Satchel

"Dead Girls is a brutal, necessary story in which Almada describes the crimes, states the facts and lays bare the horror of these femicides." —Tony's Reading List

Praise for Selva Almada

Edinburgh International Book Festival First book Award (Winner)
Book Cover of the Year (Saltire Awards) (Winner)

"Like Flannery O’Connor and Juan Rulfo, Almada fills her taut, eerie novel with an understanding of rural life, loneliness, temptation and faith." —BBC Culture

"Billed as a ‘promising voice’ in Latin American literature, this tale delivers readily on that promise." —Booklist

"The drama of this refreshingly unpredictable debut . . . smolders like a lit fuse waiting to touch off its well-orchestrated events. . . . A stimulating, heady story." —Publishers Weekly

"The story packs a punch in its portraits of a man who exalts heaven and another who protests." —Kirkus

"A dynamic introduction to a major Latin American literary force." —Shelf Awareness, starred review

"[The Wind That Lays Waste] delivers exactly that compressed pressurised electricity of a gathering thunderstorm: it sparks and sputters with live-wire tension." —TANK Magazine

"The Wind That Lays Waste is elegant and stark, a kind of emblem or vision fetched from the far edges of things, arrested and stripped to its essence, as beautiful as it is unnerving. "" —Paul Harding , author of TINKERS

"The Wind That Lays Waste is a mesmerizing novel, at once strange and compelling."" —Bonnie Jo Campbell , author of MOTHERS, TELL YOUR DAUGHTERS

"The quality and resolve of her prose produce a power of suggestion that is unique to Selva Almada." —El País

"The best novel written in Argentina in the last few years? Don’t know, and don’t care, but you must read Selva Almada." —El País

"Almada’s prose has a touch of the Faulkner of As I Lay Dying but passed through the filters of the dirty light of the cotton fields and the clean clothes worn by country people to Sunday mass."" —Germán Machado

"A distinctive debut: atmospheric, tension-packed, and written in vivid, poetic language." —Books from Scotland

"Perhaps most powerful in the book is Almada’s focus on detail―she skillfully renders the story of a day in brief chapters that reveal the thoughts and fleeting encounters of characters, who are largely living inside themselves." —Ploughshares

"Almada’s nuanced approach leaves room to explore her characters’ pasts in some detail, but, crucially, these individuals . . . are not defined by their mistakes." —ZYZZYVA

"What seems fantastical soon turns hyper-realistic, in a style that is reminiscent of Juan Rulfo or Sara Gallardo." —La Nación

"A successful riff on a classic Shakespearean tale." —Publishers Weekly

"Such is Almada’s command of shape and pace, and the clean-edged vigour of the style McDermott voices with such skill, that we take Brickmakers on its own uncompromising terms – as pulp, tragedy and epic all at once." —The Arts Desk

"Almada is forceful in her depictions of sex, violence, and rage. I feel her prose in my body: a punch in the gut, the sharpness of glass. McDermott’s translation captures the bite of Almada’s sentences, which render both tenderness and violence with devastating clarity." —Chicago Review of Books

"Almada's breathtaking multigenerational tragedy is a haunting, unforgettable examination of the lasting consequences of careless inhumanity." —Shelf Awareness, starred review

"Best books of 2021" —The Financial Times

"There is a tremendous carnality to Almada’s writing, vividly captured in McDermott’s translation" —LA Review of Books

"A rich, confident and urgent read." —Lunate

"Brickmakers is one of the best books I've read this year ... It’s a brilliant, sizzling, unmissable treat" —Translating Women


ISBN: 9781916277847

Dimensions: unknown

Weight: unknown

170 pages