We Can Only Save Ourselves

We Can Only Save Ourselves

With echoes of The Virgin Suicides and The Fates Will Find Their Way, Alison Wisdom’s debut novel is the story of one teenage girl’s unlikely indoctrination and the reverberations in the tight-knit community she leaves behind.

Alice Lange’s neighbors are proud to know her—a high-achieving student, cheerleader, and all-around good citizen, she’s a perfect emblem of their sunny neighborhood. The night before she’s expected to be crowned Homecoming Queen, though, she commits an act of vandalism, then disappears, following a magnetic stranger named Wesley to a bungalow in another part of the state. There, he promises, Alice can be her true self, shedding the shackles of conformity.

At the bungalow, however, she learns that four other young women seeking enlightenment and adventure have already followed him there. Her new lifestyle is intoxicating at first, but as Wesley’s demands on all of them increase, the house becomes a pressure cooker—until one day they reach the point of no return.

Back home, the story of Alice’s disappearance and radicalization is framed by the first-person plural chorus of the mothers who knew her before, who worry about her, but also resent the tear she made in the fabric of their perfect world, one that exposes the question: Isn’t suburbia a kind of cult unto itself?

Combining the sharp social critique of Celeste Ng’s Little Fires Everywhere with the elegiac beauty of Emma Cline’s The Girls, this is a fierce literary debut from a writer to watch.

Title:We Can Only Save Ourselves
ISBN:null
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    We Can Only Save Ourselves Reviews

  • karen

    NOW AVAILABLE!!!this one didn’t wow me. it felt like a megan abbott book with all the tastiest morsels strained out of it, leaving only the thin broth behind.it’s about a good teenaged girl from a...

  • Kristi

    “... 𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘺𝘰𝘯𝘦 𝘦𝘭𝘴𝘦 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘢𝘴𝘭𝘦𝘦𝘱, 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘪𝘵 𝘸𝘢𝘴 𝘭𝘪𝘬𝘦 𝘸𝘦 𝘸𝘦𝘳𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘰𝘯𝘭...

  • Stephanie

    The book follows Alice Lange, a small town superstar/homecoming queen candidate/high achiever/it girl who swerves from her path, runs away and joins a cult. Wisdom’s prose is beautiful and haunting....

  • Sydney

    “We Can Only Save Ourselves” is Alison Wisdom’s debut novel and you will not want to miss it! She has such a unique, beautiful, haunting, and captivating way of writing and I couldn’t put this...

  • Julia

    Alison Wisdom’s clear-eyed debut lulls you into a tenuous comfort, only to jump out when least expected. The collective narration flawlessly juggles youthful idealism and hardened maturity, marking ...

  • Tucker

    What a delightful, creepy, beautiful novel. I loved every second of this - it felt dreamy and timeless, but with a constant thread of eerie and unnerving just below the surface. Comparisons to Virgin ...

  • Claire Wisdom

    Wisdom’s novel — atmospheric, moody, and brooding — is so compelling I never wanted it to end. Fans of The Virgin Suicides, My Favorite Murder, and Crime Junkie, this one is for you!...

  • Alyssa

    Thank you so much to @alisonwisdom and @harperperennial for my gifted copy of We Can Only Save Ourselves. This beautiful, intense, and haunting book is out on February 2nd.We Can Only Save Ourselves i...

  • Cari

    This is a really tough one to review because I absolutely devoured it, and the writing is so good. The collective narration in particular is very good, and the story is so hypnotic, it will suck you r...

  • Elizabeth Good

    a timeless and haunting story with visuals that make it impossible to put down. highly recommended if you enjoy books that break up the homecoming queen/perfect neighborhood trope and tackle the easil...