2014 Winner of the Alex Award
In this darkly suspenseful debut novel, different members of the Hurst family narrate Mother, Mother: teenage daughter Violet, whose experiments with hallucinogenic drugs land her in a mental ward; Will, a twelve-year-old autistic boy who is shrinking further and further inside his own world; their father, Douglas, who spends too much time at the office and the remaining hours with a bottle of scotch; and mother, Josephine, whose subtly controlling and seemingly innocent maneuvers may just be the source of everyone else's despair. And then there's Rose, the sister who got away -- tired of Josephine's interferences, Rose ran away from home years earlier and hasn't been heard from since. But as her mother's intentions become more terrifyingly clear, Violet begins to wonder whether something far worse happened to her older sister.
“Superbly unsettling . . . Provocative. . . . A haunting meditation on family, love and unimaginable loss...A firecracker thriller full of whip-smart psychological insights.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“Zailckas is a writer to watch and treasure...fiercely disturbing...one of the most profound and insightful books about mother-child relationships when they go devastatingly wrong.” —Dallas Morning News
“It is a while since I've read anything as darkly funny as Koren Zailckas's Mother, Mother…Superbly paced and structured, with dialogue worthy of Lena Dunham, Mother, Mother is an engrossing, and finally shocking, read.”—The Guardian (UK)
“A riveting fiction debut…it’s the kind of book that keeps you up at night, featuring a mother to rival Medea or Mrs. Bates…The shocking and violent denouement shows Zailckas to be a consummate storyteller.” –Publishers Weekly
“Richly imagined and bring[s] to mind Susanna Kaysen's Girl, Interrupted. . . . An excellent page-turner recommended for those who enjoy psychological thrillers and aren't afraid of narratives that look evil in the face.” –Library Journal
“Zailckas crafts an intriguing mystery surrounding this family that will keep readers on edge as she slowly peels back layer after layer of deception.” –Booklist
“A hall of mirrors reflecting chaotic maternal psychological mayhem reminiscent of Mommie Dearest orPush or Ordinary People.”–Kirkus Reviews
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KOREN ZAILCKAS is an internationally bestselling writer, and has contributed to The Guardian, U.S. News & World Report, Glamour, Jane, and Seventeen magazine. She currently lives with her family in the Catskill mountains of New York.