by Halle Butler - included in Granta's Best of Young American Authors
Megan, recently out of college and working a meaningless job as a gastroenterologist's secretary, openly hates all of her friends for being happy and successful. She makes herself feel better by obsessively critiquing the behavior of her coworker, Jillian, a rapid cycling, grotesque optimist, whose downfall is precipitated by the purchase of a dog.
PRAISE FOR JILLIAN:
"[Jillian] offers up its characters for hatred and ridicule with such energy, obsessive detail and hopelessness that the reader can't help but read on, through exasperating flinches of sympathy and recognition. A novel that reads like rubbernecking or a junk-food binge, compelling a horrified fascination and bleak laughter in the face of outrageously painted everyday sadness."
"Butler’s aim is perfect, and her touch deft."
"This book is incredible. The deadpan way it nails what it is to be a human who lies to herself and tells different lies to everyone else makes me want to laugh and scream. It is hilarious and weird, my two favorite qualities in a book."
—Lindsay Hunter, author of Ugly Girls and Don't Kiss Me
"An authentic and beautiful portrait of a self-proclaimed asshole."
—Chelsea Martin, author of Even Though I Don't Miss You
"Halle Butler’s Jillian is a wry, smart portrait of two women set on separate courses of self-destruction, each of them judging the other on the way down. This is a bold debut, a quick, vicious ride."
—Cari Luna, author of The Revolution of Every Day
"Goddamn Halle Butler. What she's written here is a hilariously brutal tale of a woman destroying herself with cheery selfishness. I laughed myself nauseous watching the people surrounding Jillian struggle between exasperated judgment and aggravated compassion. Never before have a pair of characters made me so sick with hatred and empathy at once. Butler is writing exactly what I want to read."
—Jac Jemc, author of A Different Bed Every Time and My Only Wife
"Halle Butler is a self-assured new voice in fiction, bringing fresh humor and originality to her engaging debut."
—Elizabeth Crane, author of We Only Know So Much
ABOUT HALLE BUTLER:
Halle Butler is a writer living in Chicago. Jillian is her first novel.
Publication Date: February 2015