Study Guide

A Little Less Girl Lucifer's Ledge

By Tess Oliver

Lucifer's Ledge

There are certain places in every town that become legendary, and Lucifer's Ledge—a.k.a. the Ledge—is that place in Raynesville. For starters, it's named for Lucifer, which is basically never a good sign. When Jake gives us a quick view of the place, it doesn't seem any less ominous:

The moss covered trees and vines quickly evolved into speckled slabs of granite. The air was much thinner and colder on the way to the crest where Lucifer's Ledge stuck out like a gargoyle standing guard over a building. I could hear and smell the waterfall before I saw it. I edged my way to the top, stepping over trickles of clear water running through deep crevices in the rock. It wasn't long before the violent surge of the waterfall muted the hum of the voices down below.

I was breathing hard by the time I'd reached the Ledge. It looked out over a small, deep lake called Danver's Lagoon. The water in the lake eventually branched out into a myriad of small
streams. There was a small niche in the Ledge where you could sit and safely see the frothy white bubbles where the waterfall abruptly ended its journey into the lake below.
(19.9-10)

So the Ledge is beautiful but also pretty dangerous. And there are rumors that anyone who's ever jumped from it has been horribly hurt and mangled by the rocks at the bottom of the lagoon. Blister has always wanted Jake to jump, but he's never been stupid enough to do it. Hey, when you're the big man on campus, you don't have to listen to anyone.

Now that's Amy's dead, though, Jake goes up to the Ledge to flirt with danger a bit. Unaware of how perilous this place is, Dani just goes ahead and jumps.

What's interesting here is that in their relationship to the Ledge, we can glimpse Dani's and Jake's respective relationships to Raynesville. Jake has lived here his whole life and been burned by the place, so he's not risking his neck to impress his Raynesville cohorts any time soon. But Dani's new in town and starts stirring up trouble without really knowing what she's getting into—just like she leaps from the Ledge without knowing how dangerous it could be.

Importantly, in the end everything works out okay for Dani. She doesn't get paralyzed or drown after jumping off the Ledge, just like she ultimately comes out on top at the end of the book.

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