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LIVE ON CROWDCAST: SARA SLIGAR and AMY JO BURNS

This event will take place live on Crowdcast. Register here to save your spot! 

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Take Me Apart (MCD)

A young archivist’s obsession with her subject’s mysterious death threatens to destroy her fragile grasp on sanity, in a riveting debut novel of psychological suspense

When the famed photographer Miranda Brand died mysteriously at the height of her career, it sent shock waves through Callinas, California. Decades later, old wounds are reopened when her son, Theo, hires the ex-journalist Kate Aitken to create an archive of his mother’s work.

From Miranda’s vast maze of personal effects, Kate pieces together a portrait of a vibrant artist buckling under the pressures of ambition, motherhood, and marriage. As the summer progresses, Kate navigates vicious local rumors and her growing attraction to the enigmatic Theo, all while unearthing the shocking details of Miranda’s private life. But Kate has secrets of her own, and when she stumbles across a diary that may finally resolve the mystery of Miranda’s death, her curiosity starts to spiral into a dangerous obsession.

With breathtaking and haunting imagery, Take Me Apart paints a vivid picture of two magnetic young women, separated by years, but bonded by shared struggles. Sara Sligar draws readers into a web of secrets and lies, alternating between the present and the past and revealing the truth about Miranda’s death through the objects she left behind. A brilliant take on art, illness, and power, from a fresh, seductive new voice in suspense.

Advanced Praise for Take Me Apart:

“What a clever, visceral thriller. A raw, unfiltered twist on gaslighting that challenges how society treats women. It made me sad, angry, and fired up.”

—Araminta Hall, author of Our Kind of Cruelty

"Take Me Apart is an ambitious, intelligent, and ridiculously readable literary thriller that takes on art, sexism, violence, and mental illness—all set against an evocatively rendered Northern Californian landscape. I've lived in the Bay Area for a decade, and though I was quite certain the book's California town was made up, I still googled "Callinas," just in case. That's how good Sara Sligar is."
—Rachel Khong, author of Goodbye Vitamin

Take Me Apart is such a delicious novel: perfectly plotted, atmospheric, disturbing, sad—even sexy. Sara Sligar brings both the northern California coast and the personal history of a brilliant artist to vivid life. I couldn't put it down.”
—Lydia Kiesling, author of The Golden State

Sara Sligar is an author and academic based in Los Angeles, where she teaches English and creative writing as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Southern California. She holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of Pennsylvania and a master’s in History from the University of Cambridge. Her writing has been published in McSweeney’s, Quartz, The Hairpin, and other outlets. Take Me Apart is her first novel.

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Shiner (Riverhead Books)

On a lush mountaintop trapped in time, two women vow to protect each other at all costs-and one young girl must defy her father to survive.

An hour from the closest West Virginia mining town, fifteen-year-old Wren Bird lives in a cloistered mountain cabin with her parents. They have no car, no mailbox, and no visitors-except for her mother’s lifelong best friend. Every Sunday, Wren’s father delivers winding sermons in an abandoned gas station, where he takes up serpents and praises the Lord for his blighted white eye, proof of his divinity and key to the hold he has over the community, over Wren and her mother. 

But over the course of one summer, a miracle performed by Wren’s father quickly turns to tragedy. As the order of her world begins to shatter, Wren must uncover the truth of her father’s mysterious legend and her mother’s harrowing history and complex bond with her best friend. And with that newfound knowledge, Wren can imagine a different future for herself than she has been told to expect. 

Rich with epic love and epic loss, and diving deep into a world that is often forgotten but still part of America, Shiner reveals the hidden story behind two generations’ worth of Appalachian heartbreak and resolve. Amy Jo Burns brings us a smoldering, taut debut novel about modern female myth-making in a land of men-and one young girl who must ultimately open her eyes.

Praise for Shiner:

“This intricate novel is [a] wrenching testament, told in language as incandescent as smoldering coal. . . This is not a despairing book, but a hopeful one, of Appalachian women taking back their life stories from hoggish men whose power, both in the home and outside of it, is largely an illusion. Neither grim cliché nor opportunistic elegy, Shineris something far more raw, and more honest.”—New York Times Book Review

“Simply perfect…Do not miss this exceptional debut.”Joshilyn Jackson, New York Times-bestselling author 

Amy Jo Burns is the author of the memoir Cinderland. Her writing has appeared in The Paris Review Daily, Tin House, Ploughshares, Gay Magazine, Electric Literature, Literary Hub, and The Paris Review Daily, and the anthology Not That Bad.

Event date: 
Wednesday, June 24, 2020 - 6:30pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Take Me Apart: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780374272616
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: MCD - April 28th, 2020

Shiner: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780525533641
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Riverhead Books - May 5th, 2020

Cinderland: A Memoir Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780807052273
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Beacon Press - September 8th, 2015

Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062413512
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial - May 1st, 2018