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Aesthetica by Allie Rowbottom
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Aesthetica by Allie Rowbottom
Hardcover $27.00
Nov 22, 2022 | ISBN 9781641294003

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  • Nov 22, 2022 | ISBN 9781641294003

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  • Nov 22, 2022 | ISBN 9781641294010

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Product Details


Praise for Aesthetica

“Much will be made of how perfectly Aesthetica captures influencer culture, but the genius of this novel is how far it extends past our current moment. In biting yet empathetic prose, Allie Rowbottom explores the ethos of American image making—from the early aughts, to the Instagram face era, and even trend forecasting what’s to come. She gives it to you filter-free, making the book entirely unputdownable.”
Samantha Leach, Bustle’s Entertainment Editor-at-Large

“Nobody investigates the relationship between surface and self like Allie Rowbottom. Full of biting observations and stunningly beautiful prose, Aesthetica is poetic and singular—an unforgettable novel about power and loneliness, mothers and daughters, self-destruction and self-preservation.”
—Kimberly King Parsons, author of the National Book Award–longlisted Black Light

Aesthetica is a pitch-perfect contemporary horror story and cautionary tale. Brutal and enlightening, with prose that crackles and radiates with heat, Rowbottom holds a fun house mirror not only to the characters within, but to a patriarchal America that equates body to commodity. Ultimately, Aesthetica is hopeful, reminding us of our very humanness, of our need to love and nurture and revere; Rowbottom tells us it’s not too late to turn it all around, begin again. I’ve never read anything like it.”
—T. Kira Madden, author of Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls

“Propulsive, poetic, and addictive as hell, Aesthetica is a wholly original look not only into the world of social media influencers, but into the lives beyond the squares that are devastatingly rich in heart, depth, and ultimately, redemption. Allie Rowbottom writes like a wizard and I kept asking myself, how is she doing it? By the end, I knew only this: No one could write this book without staring down the world, really seeing it, all of it, the ugly and the strange, the blinding and gorgeous bits, and not once looking away. This book doesn’t look away. It doesn’t flinch. I’ll remember it forever.”
Chelsea Bieker, author of Godshot and Heartbroke

“Allie’s writing is a light to follow in the dark, illuminating those human realities we often wish would stay hidden, but deep down, if we’re open enough, are grateful to have seen all the same. I’m thrilled she wrote this story of discovery and self in the time of social media.”
Dantiel W. Moniz, author of Milk Blood Heat

Aesthetica is the best book about influencers I’ve ever read and the only book about the internet that doesn’t make the author sound like a thousand-year-old vampire.”
Caroline Calloway

“Allie Rowbottom is a ruthless, incisive, and painfully human chronicler of how modern technology mediates every interaction, and throws up invisible walls to connection, amplifying and dulling every desire, and every harm. Never have I read a book like hers, that captures so perfectly the feeling that our phones have become an extra limb, and tracks their emotional consequences so acutely through such a universal story. This novel is a feminist communique written on the edge of almost-oblivion—in emojis, stitches, and pills—for every woman who’s tried to save another, wishing she could force love into her. It’s written like a psychological thriller. My heart was beating in my throat on every page.”
Sarah Gerard, author of True Love

“Allie Rowbottom’s Aesthetica is a sharp and exhilarating portrait of girlhood through the distorted prism of Los Angeles and influencer culture. Her writing is alive and urgent; bravely exploring the tormented self-surveillance and unrelenting scrutiny that girls, aching to be seen, so readily subject themselves to. She deftly captures the emotional whiplash of toggling between a public and a private self, when neither feel entirely yours. Reading Aesthetica was like an incantation: each wry observation conjured visceral memories of my own girlhood I’d long since locked away: like the smell of Acqua di Gio, spray tans, calorie-counting frozen Lean Cuisines and endless Diet Coke. Like life itself, moments of horror are cut with unexpected humor and tenderness. Rowbottom accomplishes the great magic trick of powerful fiction: she reveals those secret parts of ourselves we’d long buried or forgotten that wait for us, aching to be seen.”
—Nada Alic, author of Bad Thots

Praise for Allie Rowbottom

“A book that alternately surprises and mesmerizes . . . Jell-O Girls is dark and astringent, a cutting rebuke to its delicate, candy-colored namesake . . . Rowbottom has the literary skills and the analytical cunning to pull it off . . . Gorgeous.”
The New York Times

“With this fascinating cultural history of an iconic dessert and its creators, Rowbottom has found the courage to break the mold.”

“A fascinating feminist exploration . . . A strange, sensitive account of trauma, motherhood, and America.”
Real Simple
“From these beginnings, Allie Rowbottom has molded this generous book of intuition, connection, and grace. This is a work of wild insights and deep music.”
Nick Flynn, author of Another Bullshit Night in Suck City

“Allie Rowbottom’s memoir is an unflinching exploration of the inheritance and curse behind an American icon. Graceful and genuine, Jell-O Girls is what happens when a damn good story meets an even better writer.”
Mat Johnson, author of Pym and Loving Day

“Allie Rowbotton is a talent not to be overlooked! I love this book with all my heart. I couldn’t put down this strangely sparkling cultural and family history.”
Porochista Khakpour, author of Sick

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