On the eve of their thirteenth birthday, identical twins Chloe and Sue agree to get matching tattoos to prove their bond is stronger than DNA. So begins Twins, Marcy Dermansky’s funny and disturbingly honest debut novel, the extraordinary story of blond, beautiful twin sisters trying to survive adolescence and each other.
Over the course of five years, Chloe and Sue overcome breakups, unhappy Hawaiian vacations, unicycle lessons, eating disorders, pill abuse, and their first painful explorations of love and sex. Told in alternating voices, Twins introduces two new unforgettable heroines on the verge, in a spellbinding tale of teen angst, obsession, and redemption in the suburbs.
Twins was a New York Times Editor's Choice Pick. The novel was a selection by the New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age and long-listed for the prestigious international IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.
"A brainy, emotionally sophisticated bildungsroman-for-two." -- The New York Times (an Editor’s Choice Pick)
“Dermansky excels at depicting extreme emotional states and how we rationalize them.”-- Village Voice
“Dermansky gives her misfits real dignity and avoids psycho-social cliches. She neatly captures the girls’ suburban high school world with every telling detail. Sometimes despairing, sometimes blackly humorous, always engrossing and thoroughly original. A wonderful debut.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Told in alternating voices, but it is Sue’s obsessive, urgent, heartbreakingly hilarious story of their shared teen years that drives the narrative… Dermansky, who is not a twin, has nevertheless spun a dual spell, capturing the inner world of twins and tapping into our basic human longing to keep those we love most from growing and changing.” -- New York Newsday
“With dark humor and raw power…Dermansky has created a fascinating set of characters…. Her portrayal of the difficulty of growing up and of raising children in today’s world rings true.” -- Library Journal
“Entertaining…[a] moving and well-written story of two girls learning to accept who they are.” -- Publishers Weekly
“If you thought your childhood was twisted, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Marcy Dermansky weaves a spellbinding tale. Grade: A” -- Genre Magazine
“Twins is a witty and slyly subversive take on the teenage American dream. It’s narrated in turn by both girls and is particularly worth reading for Sue’s hilariously vitriolic abuse of virtually everyone she meets. ****” -- Mail on Sunday (London)
“A beguiling story of the powerful ties between identical twins…With the ability to blend humor with these sometimes sad and lonely lives, Dermansky has crafted a memorable novel.” -- Booklist
“Raw, extraordinary…A dark, heartbreaking tale about adolescents trying to survive.” -- Huntsville Times
“Compelling, dark, and like a traffic accident that you try to look away from, only to find your gaze returning with odd fascination. This well-written book gives readers a voyeuristic, insiders’ glimpse into the lives of not only twins, but teenagers. Though at times uncomfortable, the novel is comically and darkly entertaining.” -- Denver Rocky Mountain News
“Marcy Dermansky’s Twins is a startlingly beautiful love story about two very unlikely identical twins. It’s a joy–no, a thrill–to read…This is easily the most detailed, disturbing, and loveable oddball romance you’ll ever read. Dermansky is a writer through and through.” -- Frederick Barthelme, author of Elroy Nights
“Marcy Dermansky’s Twins is spectacular, weird, extraordinarily real, and funny in ways they don’t have names for. The perils of contemporary adolescence–from pill-popping to not eating to bad tattoos–are chronicled with an immediacy so intense it’s almost alarming. Dermansky inhabits her characters with a savage, hysterical eloquence. Her novel grabs your heart from the first sentence, and breaks it by the end.” -- Jerry Stahl, author of Permanent Midnight and I, Fatty
“Marcy Dermansky is a lyrical, gifted, and original writer. She portrays the (like-no-other) twins, Chloe and Sue, with both artistry and empathy. Their distinct voices are pitch-perfect, humorous, evocative, and always compelling. With a style that’s extremely accessible and lots of fun, Dermansky is, nevertheless, a top-of-the line writer’s writer.” -- Janice Eidus, author of The Celibacy Club
“Who would have known that the perils of being a twin are also the perils of life? Marcy Dermansky has captured, in her funny and honest book, what it takes to survive those perils, and what it means to live that life.” -- John Haskell, author of American Purgatorio
Twins is available for purchase at your local bookstore or online.