Sunday, March 8, 2015

Fresh Ink: Spotlight on Debut Books of All Kinds
 A stunning debut about murder and glamour set in the ambiguous and claustrophobic world of an exclusive New England prep school

"The first time I saw Nica after she died was at Jamie Amory's Fourth of July party . . ."

Death sets the plot in motion: the murder of Nica Baker, beautiful, wild, enigmatic, and only sixteen. The crime is solved, and fast--a lonely classmate, unrequited love, a suicide-note confession--but memory and instinct won't allow Nica's older sister Grace to accept the case as closed. Dropped out of college and living at home, working at the moneyed and progressive private high school from which she recently graduated, Grace becomes increasingly obsessed with identifying and punishing the real killer.

Compulsively readable, Lili Anolik's debut novel combines the haunting atmospherics of The Secret History and the hairpin plot twists of Megan Abbott's Dare Me.

Read an excerpt HERE.

Murder Most Preppy: Lili Anolik’s Dark Rooms Is the Perfect Thriller for March

Praise for the book: 
“Great story, great twists, great insights — a brilliant start to a novelist’s career. Dark Rooms gallops out of gate but the ride is so smooth. Words are rose petals in Lili Anolik’s hands. What a privilege to get in on the ground floor with this exciting new writer. Already can’t wait for what’s next!”  ~Michael Connelly, author of The Burning Room

“The plot is high-suspense, but it’s the strength of the characters—and the strength of Anolik’s hypnotic, unfussy prose—that gives the book its lasting force. Wholly absorbing and emotionally rich...Something deeply satisfying.” ~Kirkus Reviews

Dark Rooms warrants an urgency that I haven’t experienced since reading Nancy Drew in elementary school. It had me pining for more explanations, more dialogue, more, more, more, in a way that I don’t tend to experience often as an adult...Simply put, Anolik brilliantly strings us along — which is what makes her first novel so rewarding to read, and so upsetting to finish.”  ~Los Angeles Review of Books

“Unlike recent thrillers that have flown off the Amazon shelves and into our oversize purses (and then into the hands of Hollywood producers)—this one is written as murder mysteries should be: well. Anolik’s writing is sharp and clever; sometimes you get whiffs of old-school influences like James M. Cain, a dash of James Wolcott’s twisted adjectives...But really, Anolik’s writing is entirely her own, and it’s refreshingly good in a genre where it doesn’t really need to be.” ~ Vanity Fair

“Shattering first novel from Vanity Fair contributing editor Anolik...Whether or not you believe in ghosts, Anolik’s debut will haunt you.” ~Publisher's Weekly

Dark Rooms is at once a crime novel and a high school drama, with shades of both Gillian Flynn and Curtis Sittenfeld... With complex characters and a multilayered narrative, it can be hard at times to know whom to root for; thankfully it’s equally difficult to put this stunning debut down.” ~ Bookpage

“The story line just scratches the surface of this insightful, complex novel...Anolik’s haunting debut is tough to put down and will stay with you for a long time. The author’s characters and tone recall Donna Tartt’s The Secret History or Kimberly Pauley’s Ask Me.”  ~Library Journal

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