Alice dreams of being an actress, like half the girls in Los Angeles. She occupies a sordid room that she pays for by selling shoddy clothes for a ready-to-wear brand. When her mother stops funding her acting lessons, Alice panics. She remembers her young coworker, Oona, laughing at her talking about the guys she meets on the internet and sells her panties to. What had deeply shocked Alice becomes a possibility, bearable, harmless. After all, what could happen to him? Emma Cline’s short story captivates and grips with its sharp precision and singular insight. Los Angeles is the indelible portrait of a mythical city that devours the dreams of girls, abandoning them damaged, disenchanted and hopelessly alone.