Just six months into 2017, our library has added 32 new titles and three DVDs featuring "Girls". Now not all of these fall into the thriller or "unreliable narrator" genre, but they do feature a myriad of strong female characters in a variety of situations. We have girls who've been Forgotten, Taken, Disguised, Trapped, Broken, Lost, and left Between. There are girls with make-believe husbands, needy girls, dead girls, unbeatable girls, shooting girls, final girls, and party girls. There are girls in many locations: Ennismore, Magdalen, Hummingbird Lane, Roanoke, and Rawblood; girls in the garden, on the bridge, and at the baggage claim. Girls who knew too much and girls who take an eye for an eye. Add to the list Jackie's Girl, Bloom Girls, Hello Girls, Radium Girls, a girl in green and a girl bearing gifts.
Analysts of this trend have noted that, in most cases, these girls are really "women", but the word "girl" sells better. Perhaps it seems more vulnerable or victimized? At any rate, writer Emily St. John Mandel, who wrote an article on this topic for "Goodreads", concluded that if the book's author is male, the "girl" survives 68% of the time. But if the author is female, her "girl" protagonist's fate finds her alive at the book's conclusion 90% of the time!
Will this trend continue? Probably. But we hope that some "women" gain popularity as well!
For further reading: https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-gone-girl-with-the-dragon-tattoo-on-the-train/