A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing
by Jessie Tu
Everyone’s favourite adage “sex, drugs and rock’n’roll” gets a very twenty-first century update to “sex, trauma and violins” in Jessie Tu’s explosive debut novel.
Jena is a child prodigy violinist who plays casually with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra before later in the novel winning an internship with the New York Philharmonic. Her jagged trajectory as an elite classical performer mixes dangerously with her seeking solace in debaucherous nights and destructive decision-making. Race, gender, sexuality and old-versus-new all play out in unexpected ways as Jena manages to reach some of her goals but misses others by a mile.
This is a raw and animated read for anyone tired of screaming into the void of extremely dead, white, males representing the peak of humanity’s artistic achievements, and the canonical mindset that got us here. At once salacious and self-pondering, Tu’s voice is distinctly modern, and you might just catch some juicy backstage scenes set in our very own Green Room.