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E. Forrest: Namedropper

In this excerpt from Emma Forrest’s debut novel, Namedropper, you’ll realise that you are not the only one to boast about meeting celebrities.

Emma Forrest was born in London in 1977, but presently lives and works in New York. As a child she was a hyperactive girl constantly testing her parents’ patience. In her teens she suffered from an eating disorder, she was depressed and started cutting herself. In “Namedropper”, the narrator, 16-year old Viva Cohen, carries a striking resemblance to the author. Emma Forrest dropped out of school before her GCSE, and at 16, while her peers were conscienciously listening to their teachers, she kick-started her career as a journalist in the Evening Standard and the Sunday Times.

Five years later she created her heroine Viva Cohen in her first novel, “Namedropper”. Viva attends a private school, but the school uniform is just a disguise, underneath she hides her vintage stockings and knickers. Her no. 1 preoccupation is her icons, Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe. In real life she has just a handful of friends. One of them is the stunningly beautiful Treena. This is how Viva depicts her friend in the introductory chapter of the novel.

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