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Daughters of Eve Paperback – October 3, 2011
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“I was reminded of Lord of the Flies. . . . [Daughters of Eve] is finely constructed and told.”—The New York Times Book Review
“Duncan takes care to maintain an ideological balance with her offending males and her twisted feminist.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Duncan’s latest thriller is as gripping and well told as its fine predecessors.”—Publishers Weekly --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Publisher
Sworn to secrecy. Bound by loyalty.
It's the high school's most exclusive club--but now a twisted mind is leading it. Who will be the first victim? --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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My biggest complaint about the book is that the book was made "modern" when I first read the book I assumed it was in the seventies intil it introduced iPods and cell phones. The setting didn't match up, I heard that it was made more violent which was proably a good change to the story but sometimes the setting and modern inventions didn't mix well, for example in the story one girl ask the operator to connect her to someone.
Another problem is that I feel like their was supposed to be more to the story and it was cutoff. In the story the girls had no problem causing violent actions to those who "oppress" them. But it seems like for some reason they just decided to stop doing it and where never told if anything happened or why they stopped, The teacher Mrs. Stark encouraged these girls to these actions but why would they not seek vengeance on the problem with the baseball team issue in the story? *spoiler alert* at first I thought that Jane action at the end of the story might have scared them from getting caught. But it seems that after the story they had "normal life's" or most of them. The girls most loyal to Mrs. Stark seemed like they would never stop their violent actions but for some reason they did.
Anyway the story was well written and it managed to creep me out. So I highly recommend this book.
She normally does a good job of telling stories from multiple points of view, and Daughters of Eve is as good an example of this as you can expect to find. Daughters has not three or four, but ten! main characters. The problem with this, of course, is that it makes it almost impossible to remember who's who, and to keep track of everything going on.
Duncan's plots are normally fairly hard to explain without plot spoilers, and Daughters is no exception, so suffice to say, it's about a group of girls who get some bad guidance from an prejudiced adult, and the resulting consequences. It's not an action oriented story, and there's not really a whole lot here that quantifies this book as a thriller. Most of the book is occupied by telling of the injustices perpetrated against the girls in this book by men and their overreactions to them.
Many reviewers have hammered this book for "not portraying reality," and making feminism look ridiculous. However, these reviewers are mostly mistaken. Duncan is not trying to make feminism look ridiculous, and name one book by Lois Duncan that does portray reality. The main theme of the book seems to be, that people should be careful not to take ideas to extremes. The girls in this book have some genuine complaints against the men in their town, but instead of trying to help these girls to solve their problems, their teacher teaches them to hate men and as one character in the book puts it, "You're treating them the same way you think they're treating you!"
Ok, so the book has some flaws. Some of the characters are implausible, as are some of the events of the book. It's not your typical Lois Duncan book in that it doesn't have any key story line, but rather concentrates on the girls in the Daughters of Eve over a year of adjustment. But it tackles fairly weighty issues in a simplistic way, and has good messages about family, love, and life. It doesn't make a point for feminism or against it, nor does it come over as overtly against sex before marriage or abortion. (I won't state my own opinion on these issues, because that's not what this page is here for.)
The ending is the most shocking ending I have read in any of her books, but it loses some of its power due to the epilogue inserted immediately afterwards. Overall, a dark dreary book that asks hard questions and gives hard answers. I would give the book a three out of five, but I think that Daughters is at least as good as all of her other books, and therefore doesn't deserve the fairly low rating that it receives on this site.
PS: Being a teenage boy, I found this book slightly less relevant than I think most teenage girls will.
Conservative parents should be warned that there are some sexual themes (a boy seduces an overweight young woman and then dumps her; another young woman ends up pregnant after spending the night with her boyfriend; None of this is described very explicitly, but there are some sexual references) and language (half a dozen or so s-words and about that many b-words. The word "screwing" is used in reference to sex.) in this book. Also, due to the nature of some of the issues faced in the book, I think, although listed as a novel for twelve and up, that it is more suitable for fifteen and up because it has more relevance for this age group.