A young archivist’s obsession with her subject’s mysterious death threatens to destroy her fragile grasp on sanity, in a riveting debut novel of psychological suspense.
When the famed photographer Miranda Brand died mysteriously at the height of her career, it sent shock waves through Callinas, California. Decades later, old wounds are reopened when her son, Theo, hires ex-journalist Kate Aitken to create an archive of his mother’s work.
From Miranda’s vast maze of personal effects, Kate pieces together a portrait of a vibrant artist buckling under the pressures of ambition, motherhood, & marriage. As the summer progresses, Kate navigates vicious local rumors & her growing attraction to the enigmatic Theo, all while unearthing the shocking details of Miranda’s private life. But Kate has secrets of her own, & when she stumbles across a diary that may finally resolve the mystery of Miranda’s death, her curiosity starts to spiral into a dangerous obsession.
With breathtaking & haunting imagery, ‘Take Me Apart‘ paints a vivid picture of two magnetic young women, separated by years, but bonded by shared struggles. Sara Sligar draws readers into a web of secrets & lies, alternating between the present & the past & revealing the truth about Miranda’s death through the objects she left behind.
‘Take Me Apart‘ is a strikingly rich, psychological mystery that explores mental illness, sexism, violence & obsession. It’s a slow burner that is haunting, complex & thought-provoking & will leave you yearning for more from this promising, debut author.
Here are some more good things that have been said about ‘Take Me Apart‘:
“Kate and Miranda are vividly rendered, and an entire novel could easily be crafted out of Miranda’s fascinating diary, letters, and other ephemera, snippets of which are sprinkled liberally throughout. Sligar delivers an intriguing mystery while tackling big themes, especially sexism and the societal restraints placed on women’s bodies and minds. The results are spellbinding. A raw and sophisticated debut.”
―Kirkus, starred review
“What a clever, visceral thriller. A raw, unfiltered twist on gaslighting that challenges how society treats women. It made me sad, angry, and fired up.”
―Araminta Hall, author of Our Kind of Cruelty
“This story of gaslighting, high art, intergenerational trauma, and archival work, among many other things, is propulsive in its telling and fascinating in its composition.”
―Molly Odintz, CrimeReads
“Sligar masterfully alternates between Kate’s perspective . . . and the documents Kate is finding in the disorganized piles . . . Take Me Apart is an incisive look at women in art, domestic violence, and the complexities of legacy.”
―Emily Burack, Hey Alma
“A perceptive debut . . . Alternating between chapters focusing on Kate and epistolary documents by the tormented Miranda, Sligar reveals Miranda’s unraveling throughout her brilliant career as she labors with parenthood and life with a manipulative husband . . . Sligar shows off a keen ear for dialogue . . . With a cool style and fast pace, Sligar achieves a propulsive exploration of these ambitious women’s inner turbulence in response to an abusive man in each of their lives.”
“Take Me Apart is a stunning debut. In gorgeous prose, Sara Sligar creates a haunting and decidedly feminist literary thriller that explores mental illness, violence, and the nature of obsession. I loved this novel so much that I blew off all my responsibilities, turned off my phone, and blistered through the whole thing in one sitting. Unforgettable and thought-provoking, Take Me Apart has my highest recommendation.”
―Angie Kim, author of Miracle Creek
“A study of two damaged and sympathetic women . . . Love story, hate story, mystery―all in one.”
“Sligar handles her intricately structured story’s threads with delicacy in this impressive, suspenseful debut.
―Annie Bostrom, Booklist
“Take Me Apart is such a delicious novel: perfectly plotted, atmospheric, disturbing, sad―even sexy. Sara Sligar brings both the northern California coast and the personal history of a brilliant artist to vivid life. I couldn’t put it down.”
―Lydia Kiesling, author of The Golden State
“A smart, post-modern book that takes on the complexities of gendered mental illness and trauma at an engrossing clip. With a complicated visual artist at its narrative center, Take Me Apart teases out the tensions of visibility and fame versus the hidden, unseen wounds of home and interiority, and asks the hard questions of what it means to create as a woman―create art, create life, and create yourself.”
―Caite Dolan-Leach, author of Dead Letters
***Click here 👉 ‘Take Me Apart‘ to use BookStoreLink & find this book at a local independent book store. Please read my last blog post if you haven’t already about independent bookstores & the importance of buying our books from them whenever we can. (Remember, Amazon doesn’t feel books are essential & they have been delaying most book orders for weeks, even a month on some. Which is utterly ridiculous, in my opinion. Books are ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL to readers & for learning material for kids who are now being homeschooled, like mine.
And don’t forget, tonight is the last night to enter to win two advance copy true crime novels in my Murderino Monday Instagram giveaway! Click HERE to go to that post now. Stay tuned for a NEW giveaway coming this week! And as always…stay home, stay safe, stay sane. Now go wash your hands!