The Clay Girl

The Clay Girl

4.37 (2,423 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 
4.37 (2,423 ratings by Goodreads)

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"It is the voice of the characters, the kindness of strangers, and the ingenuity and determination of our protagonist against terrible forces that make this story sing." -- San Francisco Chronicle "[An] unbelievably accomplished first novel." -- NOW Magazine American Booksellers Association Indie Next List pick Shortlisted for the 2017 Kobo Emerging Writer Prize Shortlisted for the 2017 Atlantic Book Awards Publishers Weekly, starred review A deeply compassionate novel about a gentle child who radiates goodness and the way that light refracts -- even in the harshest of circumstances. For the Appleton sisters, life has unravelled many times before. But with a sudden gunshot, it finally explodes. In the aftermath of chaos and tragedy, eight-year-old Hariet Appleton, known to all as Ari, is shipped off to Cape Breton and her Aunt Mary, who is purported to eat little girls. But Mary and her partner, Nia, offer an unexpected refuge to Ari and her steadfast companion, Jasper, an imaginary seahorse. Yet the respite does not last, and Ari is forced to return to her addiction-addled mother and broken sisters. Through the sexual revolution and drug culture of the 1960s, Ari struggles with her father's legacy and her mother's addictions, testing limits with substances that numb and men who show her kindness. Through it all, her epic imagination colors her grim reality. Ari spins through a chaotic decade of loss and love with wit, tenacity, and the astonishing balance unique to seahorses. The Clay Girl is a beautiful tour de force with the voice of an unforgetting child, sculpted by kindness, cruelty, and the extraordinary power of imagination.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 312 pages
  • 140 x 216 x 28mm | 454g
  • Montreal, Canada
  • English
  • illustrations
  • 1770413030
  • 9781770413030
  • 220,748

Review quote

"Ari Appleton will take your breath away ... Astonishingly exquisite debut novel ... Author Tucker's prose is as lyrical and powerful as the ocean, Ari's voice as sure and strong as a rudder through wild seas ... Her rare gift of showing us beauty, hope and humour amid profound trauma make The Clay Girl an extraordinary debut novel." -- Toronto Star
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About Heather Tucker

Heather Tucker has won many prose and short-story writing competitions, and her stories have appeared in anthologies and literary journals. She lives in Ajax, Ontario.
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Rating details

4.37 out of 5 stars
- 2,423 ratings
5 57% (1,393)
4 28% (673)
3 11% (259)
2 3% (64)
1 1% (34)
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