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The Drowning Girl Paperback – March 6, 2012
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“Incisive, beautiful and as perfectly crafted as a puzzle-box, The Drowning Girl took my breath away.”—Holly Black, New York Times bestselling author of Red Glove
“This is a masterpiece. It deserves to be read in and out of genre for a long, long time.”
—Elizabeth Bear, author of Grail
“A beautifully written, startlingly original novel.”—Elizabeth Hand, author of Illyria
“With The Drowning Girl, Caitlín R. Kiernan moves firmly into the new vanguard, still being formed, of our best and most artful authors of the gothic and fantastic—those capable of writing fiction of deep moral and artistic seriousness. This subtle dark in-folded novel, through which flickers a weird insistent genius, is like nothing I’ve ever read before. The Drowning Girl is a stunning work of literature, and if I may be so blunt, Caitlin R. Kiernan’s masterpiece.”—Peter Straub
“In this novel, Caitlín R. Kiernan turns the ghost story inside out and transforms it. This is a story about how stories are told, about what they reveal and what they hide, but is no less intense or suspenseful because of that. It’s a tale of real and unreal hauntings that quickly takes you down deep and only slowly brings you up for air.”—Brian Evanson, author of Last Days
“The Drowning Girl features all those elements of Caitlín R. Kiernan’s writing that readers have come to expect—a prose style of wondrous luminosity, an atmosphere of languorous melancholy, and an inexplicable mixture of aching beauty and clutching terror. It is a ghost story, but also a book about the writing of ghost stories. It is about falling in love, falling out of love, and wondering whether madness is a gift or a curse. It is one of those very few novels that one wishes would never end.”—S. T. Joshi, author of I Am Providence: The Life and Times of H.P. Lovecraft
“Kiernan pins out the traditional memoir on her worktable and metamorphoses it into something wholly different and achingly familiar, more alien, more difficult, more beautiful, and more true.”—Catherynne M. Valente, New York Times bestselling author of Deathless
About the Author
Caitlin R. Kiernan is the author of nine novels, including Silk, Threshold, Low Red Moon, Murder of Angels, Daughter of Hounds, and The Red Tree. Her award-winning short fiction has been collected in six volumes, including Tales of Pain and Wonder; To Charles Fort, With Love; Alabaster; and, most recently, A is for Alien. She has also published two volumes of erotica, Frog Toes and Tentacles and Tales from the Woeful Platypus. Trained as a vertebrate paleontologist, she currently lives in Providence, Rhode Island.
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India Morgan Phelps --- or IMP, as she refers to herself --- is a writer of sorts. She is penning a memoir which she refers to as a ghost story. It is far from your traditional haunted tale as the real trickery seems to lie within her own mind where the real and the imagined often blur. Has she been victimized by an ancient siren/wolf-girl or she only imagining it. Why is she haunted by the painting of The Drowning Girl she saw years earlier?
Though written in a classic throwback style and distinctly original, I found THE DROWNING GIRL somewhat inaccessible at times and at other times coming across as too clever for its own good. An interesting read --- but still cannot understand how this was even nominated for Best Horror Novel of the year yet won the Edgar Award in this category. More William S. Burroughs than Stephen King in this thriller!
There was a chapter of the story where Imp, our narrator, decided to go of her meds all in the name of remembering her 'true memories'. I have to admit, that that was a hard charter for me..I found it hard to follow and really lost what she was trying to say...
In the Drowning Girl..Imp really doesn't know what gruel happened to her..and I feel like as a reader of her memoir, I really have no idea either..All I can say that I have come away with is the fact that 'something' happened to India Morgan Phelps..and her shattered mind created a story to cope...this is that story.
This was my first tryst with this author...and I will say that my not truly grasping what Imp was trying to say, in no way stopped me from enjoying Caitlín's writing or story telling. I have since purchased two more of her books..While this book is a success in telling a mad woman's story..it was difficult as a reader to follow at times...