Thursday, 13 February 2020

BLOG TOUR: Wilder Girls by Rory Power


Today I am lucky enough to be a stop on the #WilderGirls blog tour - and just in time for Galentine's Day!

This is perfect timing, because friendship is a HUGE theme in Wilder Girls. 

What is Wilder Girls about?

Everyone loses something to the Tox; Hetty lost her eye, Reese's hand has changed, and Byatt just disappeared completely.
It’s been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put in quarantine. The Tox turned the students strange and savage, the teachers died off one by one. Cut off from the mainland, the girls don’t dare wander past the school’s fence where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure as the Tox takes; their bodies becoming sick and foreign, things bursting out of them, bits missing.
But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her best friend, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie in the wilderness past the fence. As she digs deeper, she learns disturbing truths about her school and what else is living on Raxter Island. And that the cure might not be a cure at all . . .

Guest post by Rory Power

As part of the virtual blog tour, author Rory Power has written about the importance of female friendships in her book and in real life. So, I'll hand you over to Rory!

Photo of Rory provided by Macmillan

Wilder Girls is about a lot of things - being alienated from one’s own body, the changes happening in our climate, and queer romance, among others - but really, at its core, it’s about the bond between a pair of best friends. Like almost every relationship in the book, that friendship is complicated, messy and destructive. It has the power to change the world the characters live in, and to hold together a trio of girls on the edge of falling apart.

I’ve always been fascinated by trios of characters. It’s an unstable number, three - usually it’s made up of a pair and a third that is somehow the odd one out. Harry and Ron, and Hermione. Joey and Chandler, and Ross. For Wilder Girls, that’s Hetty and Byatt, and Reese. Hetty and Byatt are best friends, always together, relying on each other in a way that might be called codependent. That kind of friendship is so familiar to many of us. I had many like it when I was a teenager, particularly. At that age, my friends were how I defined myself, how I figured out who I was and who I wanted to be. For Hetty, who’s been cut off from the outside world, her friendship with Byatt is all she has to define herself, and when that’s taken away from her, she’ll stop at nothing to get it back.

But my favorite things about a trio of characters are the secondary relationships - the two people who probably wouldn’t hang out without the third. Byatt and Reese don’t have much to say to each other, but they don’t need to. They see each other clearly, for better or worse.

Those are the sorts of friendships I’ve come to value in my own life. People who call you on your bad habits, who push you to be better, who let you be just who you are and not who you’re expected to be. It is worth so much to have someone who understands you exactly. That may not always come along with closeness, but on this particular Galentine’s Day (which I must of course pause to thank Leslie Knope for helping to popularize) I’m thinking of the people in my life who stay there by choice, and who help me be my fullest self.

Get the book:

Book cover provided by Macmillan