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Wet Paint: 'A blistering story' Stylist

Chloe Ashby

5 Reviews

Rated 0

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

Searingly incisive, darkly funny and achingly poignant, Wet Paint is a novel about attempting to navigate the world as a twenty-something woman, exploring the highs and lows of friendship, love and loss.

'This isn't a book you read, but a book you step into . . . mesmerising' Emma Gannon

Since the death of her best friend Grace, twenty-six-year-old Eve has learned to keep everything and everyone at arm's length. Safe in her detachment, she scrapes along waiting tables and cleaning her shared flat in exchange for cheap rent, finding solace in her small routines.

But when a chance encounter at work brings her past thundering into her present, Eve becomes consumed by painful memories of Grace. And soon her precariously maintained life begins to unravel: she loses her job, gets thrown out of her flat, and risks pushing away the one decent man who cares about her.

Taking up life-modelling to pay the bills, Eve lays bare her body but keeps hidden the mounting chaos inside her head. When her self-destructive urges spiral out of control, she's forced to confront the traumatic event that changed the course of her life, and to finally face her grief and guilt.

Perfect for fans of Sally Rooney's Conversations with Friends, Raven Leilani's Luster, and Ottessa Moshfegh's My Year of Rest and Relaxation.

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Praise for Wet Paint: 'A blistering story' Stylist

  • This isn't a book you read, but a book you step into. Chloe Ashby has created a mesmerising and energetic world of grief, art and self discovery. I loved Eve and spending time with her on every page. - Emma Gannon

  • An utterly absorbing story of art, friendship, love, and loss. Perfect for fans of Anna Hope's Expectation but very much its own tender, dark, funny, vivid thing. - Lydia Ruffles

  • In this poised, heartfelt debut, Ashby paints a raw, richly-detailed portrait of untethered youth, friendship and suppressed grief.

  • - Olivia Sudjic, author of Asylum Road

  • Dark, witty and totally compelling. - Laura Kay, author of The Split

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Chloe Ashby

Chloe Ashby is an author and arts journalist. Since graduating from the Courtauld Institute of Art, she has written for publications such as the TLS, Guardian, FT Life & Arts, Spectator and frieze.

Wet Paint is her debut novel.

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