‘Until The Girl Died’ by Anne Enright

Enright, Anne 2007

Until The Girl Died by Anne Enright, 2008

The magic trick:

A narrator who is brash in telling a story that reveals her hurt

This story demonstrates terrific use of subtext. Our first-person narrator talks the talk. She is brash and seemingly in control of the situation. She tells details of tragedy without batting an eye. She’s tough.

But as her story spools out, it becomes increasingly clear that she doesn’t have as tight a handle on everything as she’d like to think. So the story splits into two stories – the one she tells and the one we infer. And that’s quite a trick on Enright’s part.

The selection:

I thought about this a lot over the years. Things catch my eye in articles in magazines. I have wondered what makes them go and what makes them stay. What do they want, men? It’s a great mystery, isn’t it, what men want and the damage they might do to get it.

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