Turn Our Eyes Away: The Newly Released Millenial Novel

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(Newswire.net — February 11, 2015) Detroit, MI — Very rarely does a book come along that manages to capture the voice of a generation so well that the reader wonders if the book was literally written yesterday. Even rarer does an author manage to choose her words so well that the reader feels personally insulted and degraded- in the best way possible.


This is the feeling that one gets as they get lost in Turn Our Eyes Away, the debut new adult novel by up-and-coming author Zoe Zorka (Argus Publishing, $21.95 USD). The book, written in anti-narrative style, consists solely of electronic police evidence, social media posts, and archived text messages, yet reads easily like a novel. The story explores the lives of two women, Olivia and Tiffany, who were bound together by childhood tragedy, but then at age 18, separated and went their own ways. Ten years later, their lives will cross paths again, ultimately ending in tragedy for one of them.


While the anti-bullying theme is strong throughout the book, Zorka never lets it blatantly overshadow a fast-moving plot and strong character development. The book is the first of its kind in many respects. It is one of the first books written by a millennial for millenials. Rather than pandering to a young adult audience, the 27-year-old Zorka sets the tone early on that this is not a book for teenyboppers. She references Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat with relative ease while un-ironically managing to incorporate hash tags and selfie love throughout the novel. It’s also one of the few books written from two female narrative perspectives rather than a male and female. Readers can also follow the two characters on social media, blurring the line between fiction and reality like never before. In a world where guerilla marketing creates superstars, Zorka has managed to capitalize on the naiveté of the Internet as she tweets, posts, and shares status updates from her characters as if they were real people. 


The soundest part of the book was the strong character development. As a reader, I alternated between hating every character in the story and cheering them on. Zorka is unapologetic about failing to create a clear heroine. In an interview, she says that she wanted “to create characters that were real, that were flawed…like most people we know.”


While it might be a bold claim, I’d say that this book is the Gone Girl for the digital generation. This book reads like a movie at times and Zorka has made it clear that she would like to see it optioned for film within the next few years. Although she has said that there will be no sequel, Zorka has hinted at a spinoff. If the sophomore novel is half as good as Turn Our Eyes Away, Ms. Flynn might be forced to hand over the title of “Queen of Suspense” to Zorka.


Proceeds from the sale of Turn Our Eyes Away will go towards the I am Possible Foundation, an organization designed to stop childhood and adult bullying.


Turn Our Eyes Away is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, and in select Barnes and Noble booksellers and independent bookstores worldwide. For more information, go to http://www.turnoureyesaway.com/.



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