The Diver's Clothes Lie Empty
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The Diver's Clothes Lie Empty

3.42 (4,505 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

From the acclaimed author of Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name and The Lovers comes a taut, spellbinding literary thriller that probes the essence and malleability of identity.

In Vendela Vida's taut and mesmerizing novel of ideas, a woman travels to Casablanca, Morocco, on mysterious business. While checking into her hotel, the woman is robbed of her wallet and passport--all of her money and identification. Though the police investigate, the woman senses an undercurrent of complicity between the hotel staff and the authorities--she knows she'll never recover her possessions. Stripped of her identity, she feels burdened by the crime yet strangely liberated by her sudden freedom to be anyone she chooses.

A chance encounter with a movie producer leads to a job posing as a stand-in for a well-known film star. The star reels her in deeper, though, and soon she's inhabiting the actress's skin off set, too--going deeper into the Casablancan night and further from herself. And so continues a strange and breathtaking journey full of unexpected turns, an adventure in which the woman finds herself moving further and further away from the person she once was.

Told with vibrant, lush detail and a wicked sense of humor, The Diver's Clothes Lie Empty is part literary mystery, part psychological thriller--an unforgettable novel that explores free will, power, and a woman's right to choose not her past, perhaps not her present, but certainly her future. This is Vendela Vida's most assured and ambitious novel yet.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 216 pages
  • 147 x 216 x 20mm | 318g
  • Ecco Press
  • English
  • 0062110918
  • 9780062110916
  • 792,084

Review quote

"[Diver's Clothes] begins in a realist mode but sheds this skin as it goes, becoming in its second half a gently postmodern, surrealist philosophical novel on the protean nature of personal identity. That it manages to do this gracefully and in the span of 212 pages is remarkable."--BookForum
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Back cover copy

From the acclaimed author of Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name comes a taut, spellbinding literary thriller that probes the essence and malleability of identity

In Vendela Vida's taut and mesmerizing novel of ideas, a woman travels to Casablanca, Morocco, on mysterious business. While checking into her hotel, the woman is robbed of her wallet and passport--all of her money and identification. Stripped of her identity, she feels burdened by the crime yet strangely liberated by her sudden freedom to be anyone she wants to be.

Told with vibrant, lush detail and a wicked sense of humor, The Diver's Clothes Lie Empty is part literary mystery, part psychological thriller--an unforgettable novel that explores free will, power, and a woman's right to choose not her past, perhaps not her present, but certainly her future. This is Vendela Vida's most assured and ambitious novel yet.

"Part glamorous travelogue, part slow-burn mystery, this full-bodied tale of a runaway is at once formally inventive and heartbreakingly familiar. (It's also insanely funny.)"--Lena Dunham

"[Vida's] finest book....With its echoes of Hitchcock and Highsmith, this novel is full of darting pleasures."--New York Times
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Rating details

4,505 ratings
3.42 out of 5 stars
5 13% (577)
4 37% (1,654)
3 35% (1,563)
2 12% (543)
1 4% (168)
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