The Changeling: A Novel
- Publish Date: 2017-06-13
- Binding: Hardcover
- Author: Victor LaValle
âIf the literary gods mixed together Haruki Murakami and Ralph Ellison, the result would be Victor LaValle.ââAnthony Doerr, author of All the Light We Cannot See
âA dark fairy tale of New York, full of magic and loss, myth and mystery, love and madness. The Changeling is a mesmerizing, monumental work.ââMarlon James, author of A Brief History of Seven Killings
Named one of the most anticipated books of the season by The Washington Post and Publishers Weekly
When Apollo Kagwaâs father disappeared, all he left his son were strange recurring dreams and a box of books stamped with the word IMPROBABILIA. Now Apollo is a father himselfâand as he and his wife, Emma, are settling into their new lives as parents, exhaustion and anxiety start to take their toll. Apolloâs old dreams return and Emma begins acting odd. Irritable and disconnected from their new baby boy, at first Emma seems to be exhibiting signs of postpartum depression, but it quickly becomes clear that her troubles go even deeper. Before Apollo can do anything to help, Emma commits a horrific actâbeyond any parentâs comprehensionâand vanishes, seemingly into thin air.
Thus begins Apolloâs odyssey through a world he only thought he understood, to find a wife and child who are nothing like heâd imagined. His quest, which begins when he meets a mysterious stranger who claims to have information about Emmaâs whereabouts, takes him to a forgotten island, a graveyard full of secrets, a forest where immigrant legends still live, and finally back to a place he thought he had lost forever.
This captivating retelling of a classic fairy tale imaginatively exploresÂ parental obsession, spousal love, and the secrets that make strangers out of the people we love the most. Itâs a thrilling and emotionally devastating journey through the gruesome legacies that threaten to devour us and the homely, messy magic that saves us, if weâre lucky.
Advance praise for The Changeling
âFans of the macabre canât miss the latest offering from prolific horror master Victor LaValle, which hurls us into the most harrowing abyss imaginable: parenthood. . . . Definitely scarier than anything youâll hear around the campfire.ââVulture
âLike a good Coen brothers film, this genre-defying, achingly literate phantasmagoria of a novel will work every nook and cranny of the imagination, taking the reader to places weâre either too afraid to visit or never knew existed.ââPaul Beatty, author of The Sellout
âAbsolutely compelling, completely thrilling, The Changeling overflows with menace, wonder, and beauty.ââKelly Link, author of Get in Trouble
âThis year, the most unsettling novel I read, the scariest novel I read, and the most beautiful novel I read were all the same oneâVictorÂ LaValleâsÂ The Changeling. A father who loses his wife and child in an act of horror must hunt them into metaphorical hell to get them back again. This story feels less written, than channeled. I say this without exaggeration: Itâs a masterpiece.ââMat Johnson, author ofÂ PymÂ andÂ Loving Day
âLaValle has a knack for blending social realism with genre tropes, and this blend of horror story and fatherhood fable is surprising and admirably controlled. . . . LaValle has successfully delivered a tale of wonder and thoughtful exploration of what it means to be a parent. A smart and knotty merger of horror, fantasy, and realism.ââKirkus Reviews (starred review)