Mystery writer Erica Wright is back this fall with her latest book The Blue Kingfisher and while we wait for the release of the novel, we’re following Wright’s lead and picking up the books she loves. Find out what Erica Wright reads, now.
Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl
In Neverworld Wake, a group of friends gets stuck in time, a single day repeating until they are ready to make an unthinkable sacrifice. After teetering on the verge of insanity, they finally decide on a mission: using their predicament to solve the murder of a high school classmate. Pessl is one of my favorite authors, so of course, I get nervous when she releases a new book. What if I don’t love it as much as the last one? My fears were completely unwarranted with Neverworld Wake, which I read in two glorious afternoons. Pessl combines sharp writing with vivid storytelling, blending genres until she creates something that feels wholly new.
Veil by Rafia Zakaria
Zakaria combines scholarship, philosophy and her own experience to explore the fraught subject of veils. It’s clear from the beginning that this will not be a dry academic analysis, but rather a vibrant discussion ranging from the personal to the political, from reality to symbolism. The first chapter opens with the author’s wedding at 18 and ends with her dual longing: “I can remember only a feverish and forceful wish to show everyone that I was good and bold, obedient and independent.” This theme of contradictions – of holding multiple truths at once – reappears throughout this engaging text.
Perennial by Kelly Forsythe
These powerful poems respond to the Columbine massacre, but they are also about rupture more broadly – what it means to exist before and after unthinkable violence. What happens if that rupture takes place in childhood, on a day that should be spent with yearbooks, crushes and Lisa Frank stickers instead? I saw Forsythe read from this collection and discuss her meticulous research, but what I find most compelling about Perennial is how comfortable it is with questions rather than answers. Forsythe has what John Keats might have identified as negative capability, a willingness to linger “in uncertainties, mysteries, doubts.”
The Blue Kingfisher by Erica Wright
“Fascinating and fully developed characters lift Wright’s intriguing third Kat Stone mystery… Wright’s vividly told tale is studded with wry wit.” ―Publishers Weekly