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The Swallows
by Lisa Lutz




Overview -
A teacher at a New England prep school ignites a gender war--with deadly consequences--in this dark and provocative novel by the bestselling author of The Passenger

"Riveting . . . full of imagination and power."--Caroline Kepnes, author of You and Providence

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NEW YORK - WINNER OF THE ALA'S ALEX AWARD

When Alexandra Witt joins the faculty at Stonebridge Academy, she's hoping to put a painful past behind her. Then one of her creative writing assignments generates some disturbing responses from students. Before long, Alex is immersed in an investigation of the students atop the school's social hierarchy--and their connection to something called the Darkroom. She soon inspires the girls who've started to question the school's "boys will be boys" attitude and incites a resistance. But just as the movement is gaining momentum, Alex attracts the attention of an unknown enemy who knows a little too much about her--and what brought her to Stonebridge in the first place.

Meanwhile, Gemma, a defiant senior, has been plotting her attack for years, waiting for the right moment. Shy loner Norman hates his role in the Darkroom, but can't find the courage to fight back until he makes an unlikely alliance. And then there's Finn Ford, an English teacher with a shady reputation, who keeps one eye on his literary ambitions and one on Ms. Witt. As the school's secrets begin to trickle out, a boys-versus-girls skirmish turns into an all-out war, with deeply personal--and potentially fatal--consequences for everyone involved.

Lisa Lutz's blistering, timely tale of revenge and disruption shows us what can happen when silence wins out over decency for too long--and why the scariest threat of all might be the idea that sooner or later, girls will be girls.

Praise for The Swallows

"The Swallows is fast-moving, darkly humorous and at times shockingly vicious. The battle of the sexes within its pages couldn't be more compelling. . . . Lutz delivers a frantic, morbidly funny story."--BookPage

"A decade before the #MeToo movement kicks off in full force, women are coming for the patriarchy in this big ol' novel, ripe with idiosyncratic characterization and memorable scenes."--Refinery29

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More About The Swallows by Lisa Lutz

 
 
 

Overview

A teacher at a New England prep school ignites a gender war--with deadly consequences--in this dark and provocative novel by the bestselling author of The Passenger

"Riveting . . . full of imagination and power."--Caroline Kepnes, author of You and Providence

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NEW YORK - WINNER OF THE ALA'S ALEX AWARD

When Alexandra Witt joins the faculty at Stonebridge Academy, she's hoping to put a painful past behind her. Then one of her creative writing assignments generates some disturbing responses from students. Before long, Alex is immersed in an investigation of the students atop the school's social hierarchy--and their connection to something called the Darkroom. She soon inspires the girls who've started to question the school's "boys will be boys" attitude and incites a resistance. But just as the movement is gaining momentum, Alex attracts the attention of an unknown enemy who knows a little too much about her--and what brought her to Stonebridge in the first place.

Meanwhile, Gemma, a defiant senior, has been plotting her attack for years, waiting for the right moment. Shy loner Norman hates his role in the Darkroom, but can't find the courage to fight back until he makes an unlikely alliance. And then there's Finn Ford, an English teacher with a shady reputation, who keeps one eye on his literary ambitions and one on Ms. Witt. As the school's secrets begin to trickle out, a boys-versus-girls skirmish turns into an all-out war, with deeply personal--and potentially fatal--consequences for everyone involved.

Lisa Lutz's blistering, timely tale of revenge and disruption shows us what can happen when silence wins out over decency for too long--and why the scariest threat of all might be the idea that sooner or later, girls will be girls.

Praise for The Swallows

"The Swallows is fast-moving, darkly humorous and at times shockingly vicious. The battle of the sexes within its pages couldn't be more compelling. . . . Lutz delivers a frantic, morbidly funny story."--BookPage

"A decade before the #MeToo movement kicks off in full force, women are coming for the patriarchy in this big ol' novel, ripe with idiosyncratic characterization and memorable scenes."--Refinery29

 

Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781984818232
  • ISBN-10: 1984818236
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • Publish Date: August 2019
  • Page Count: 416
  • Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.4 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds


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BookPage Reviews

The Swallows

Lisa Lutz’s new novel, The Swallows, is fast-moving, darkly humorous and at times shockingly vicious. The battle of the sexes within its pages couldn’t be more compelling.

The book opens as teacher Alexandra “Alex” Witt reluctantly begins a new role at the prestigious Stonebridge Academy, a boarding school in Vermont. Alex isn’t one of those teachers whose passion for the profession overrides all else. She doesn’t hate it, but she doesn’t love it. After losing a similar position following a scandal at her previous school, she’s just happy to be employed at all.

She doesn’t hate or love her students either, although they would be easy to hate after one of them hides a dead rat in her desk on the first day of class. Alex responds by assigning them five questions: What do you love? What do you hate? If you could live inside a book, what book? What do you want? Who are you?

What she gets in response is both surprising and mysterious. Many of the anonymous responses cite something called the Darkroom. It’s not long before Alex begins to match the students to their replies and discovers the school’s secret hierarchical pecking order, ruled from the top by a group of students known as the Ten. Even worse is a dark game in which the boys secretly rate and critique the girls on who gives the best blow job.

Student Gemma Russo quickly emerges as the second most important voice in the story as Alex convinces her to stand up for herself and the other girls on campus against their male counterparts, resulting in a wildly creative and hilarious episode.

Lutz delivers a frantic, morbidly funny story about what happens when girls are no longer willing to excuse bad behavior as “boys will be boys.”

 

BAM Customer Reviews