Alison Umminger grew up in Arlington, Virginia, and as an undergraduate was the fourth woman to be elected president of The Harvard Lampoon. Today, she is an associate professor at the University of West Georgia in Carrollton, Georgia, where she lives with her husband, a blues musician, and their four-year-old daughter. My Favorite Manson Girl is her first book.
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 AtlanticMessy, 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.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 PostAn 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