Animals Eat Each Other – Elle Nash

In small town America, a troubled 19 year old girl, who wants to be loved, starts a three-way affair with Matt, a Satanist and Frances, his girlfriend, who’s a tattoo artist and a new parent.

It’s a high maintenance liaison, with strict rules, that does nothing for its unbalanced and destructive format. The girl, already lost and seeking…something…loses herself in the relationship – and emerges with a new name: Lilith.

As Lilith grows closer to Matt, the jealousy and obsession between him and Frances deepens. It’s a menage a trois in a spiral descent: of pain and pleasure; isolation and promise; love and loss.

At its roots, this is a coming of age novel. A young woman is desperate to make a deep connection with others, but who is – as yet; the double-edged sword of youth – without the emotional experience to cope with the darker side of life.

The novel is at times brutal – and brutally honest – and certainly doesn’t pack a satisfying conclusion. It’s ‘saved’ by the skill by the author. Elle Nash writes beautifully; the imagery is striking, the depth of feeling relatable, but neither is at the expense of the story.

Animals Eat Each Other won’t be for everyone, and you won’t know until you try it, because it is engaging! It’s not an easy read and the subject matter itself is uncomfortable at times – but I guess this is rather the point. Life, love and desire are not always comfortable either, especially (maybe) at nineteen.

Published in the UK by 404 Ink


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