By the bestselling author of DECEMBER. 'This haunting, shimmering novel reminds us how all of us know our families: with unimaginable intimacy, and hardly at all.' Andrew Solomon
As the summer begins, the Jacobs family arrive at their holiday home in Massachusetts, only to find that a truck has been driven into their water-filled quarry and a young man has drowned. It is a dreadful echo of another recent death: the suicide of Joan and Anders' eldest daughter.
When details emerge of the man's identity, fifteen-year-old Eve becomes obsessed with proving that his death wasn't an accident, while her little sister unwittingly adopts his orphaned dog. Joan is more interested in tracking down the drowned man's mother, while Anders, who cannot talk about his own daughter's death, doesn't want to get involved. As they simultaneously try to adjust to their own loss and absorb this apparent tragedy, each in their own way confronts life's normal hurdles - growing up, sustaining a marriage, facing the future.
Here are characters so vividly imagined and drawn with such emotional insight that they leap off the page. When the summer ends, you will not want to let them go.
With insight, respect and luminous clarity...This haunting, shimmering novel reminds us how all of us know our families: with unimaginable intimacy, and hardly at all. - Andrew Solomon, National Book Award winner of Far From the Tree
Once again, Elizabeth Winthrop conjures light from a dark place in her beautifully constructed, touching novel. - Christine Schutt, bestselling author of Prosperous Friends
PRAISE FOR DECEMBER:
'Winthrop is brilliant at depicting the bewildering world and its assault on the senses of a struggling adolescent . . . This extraordinary novel seduces as it also challenges: curiously provoking and offering small flashes of illumination, like matches struck in that dim and meaningful space on the far side of language.' - Natalie Sandison, The Times
Like budding artist Isabelle, Winthrop is a master of observation, and her ability to crystallize themes in particular vignettes (fixing a broken phonograph, buying Christmas presents) brings this affecting family drama vividly to life. - Publisher's Weekly
With insight, respect and luminous clarity . . . This haunting, shimmering novel reminds us how all of us know our families: with unimaginable intimacy, and hardly at all. - Andrew Solomon
Often, after a tragedy, we wonder how people find the will to put one foot ahead of the other, to somehow move forward. In many ways, Winthrop has written a novel about continuance . . . her message, as complex as it is simple, is that the unendurable can and will be endured only if one chooses to go on. - New York Times Book Review
Totally engrossing from start to finish. Winthrop's scene building is captivating, her characterization intricately layered, and her ability to build tension both preternatural and Hitchcockian - the suspense accumulating so subtly that you don't notice you're getting wound up 'til you put the book down to take a break and suddenly your teeth are clenched. - Ploughshares
A fast-paced entertaining summer read. - People
Elizabeth H. Winthrop was born and raised in New York City. She graduated from Harvard University in 2001 with a BA in English and American Literature and Language, and in 2004 she received her Master of Fine Arts in fiction from the University of California at Irvine. Her stories have appeared in a variety of publications including the Missouri Review and the Indiana Review. Fireworks, her first novel, was published by Sceptre in 2006, her second, December, was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick for 2009, she pulished her third novel, The Why of Things, in 2013. The Mercy Seat is her most recent work, published by Sceptre. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband, daughter and St. Bernard, and is Assistant Professor of English/Creative Writing at Endicott College.