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A Study in Drowning

A novel by


'A love letter to stories - and to everyone silenced or forgotten in their retelling.' Allison Saft, author of A Far Wilder Magic.

Effy has always believed in fairy tales. She's had no choice. Since childhood, she's been haunted by visions of the Fairy King. She's found solace only in the pages of
Angharad - a beloved epic about a mortal girl who falls in love with the Fairy King, and then destroys him.

Effy's tattered copy is all that's keeping her afloat through her stifling first term at her prestigious architecture college. So when the late author's family announces a contest to design his house, Effy feels certain this is her destiny.

But Hiraeth Manor is an impossible task: a musty, decrepit estate on the brink of crumbling into a hungry sea. And when Effy arrives, she finds she isn't the only one who's made a temporary home there. Preston Héloury, a stodgy young literature scholar, is studying Myrddin's papers and is determined to prove her favourite author is a fraud.

As the two rival students investigate the reclusive author's legacy, piecing together clues through his letters, books, and diaries, they discover that the house's foundation isn't the only thing that can't be trusted. There are dark forces, both mortal and magical, conspiring against them - and the truth may bring them both to ruin.

A Study in Drowning - New York Times and Sunday Times bestseller, w/e 1st October 2023.
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Praise for this book

"As merciless as a rising tide and as beguiling as a fairy’s bargain." - Melissa Albert

"As always, Ava Reid's worlds feel lived-in and rich in history. This one is also full of myth and superstition, and heavy rains that fall upon crumbling old houses. A rewarding, romantic read, with much to chew on." - Kendare Blake

"Haunting and elegantly rendered, A Study in Drowning is a lyrical examination of stories told, cherished myths, and an unraveling of truths held dear. Darkly romantic and unsettlingly eerie, I will be thinking about this book for a long time to come." - Erin A Craig

"In A Study in Drowning, Reid questions the idea of stories, who writes them, and who they are for. Between heart-wrenching discoveries, lush worldbuilding, and prose as beautiful and cruel as the sea, she delivers an answer I won't soon forget. I could read this book again and again - absolute perfection." - Courtney Gould

"Both haunting and tender. Set amongst crumbling cliffsides and a raging sea, this atmospheric story will settle in your bones. Romantic, beautifully written, and powerful." - Rachel Griffin

"A Study in Drowning is everything: a dark fairytale, a tender romance, a haunting historical mystery, and a quietly furious tribute to the people whose stories have been stolen from them. I absolutely loved it." - Alix E Harrow

"Lyrical, moving, and sensitive, A Study in Drowning is a magically romantic tale, filled with writing that will sweep you into a whimsical and gothic world. I'll recommend this beautiful and thoughtful book over and over again." - Isabel Ibañez

"Lyrical, incisive, and tragically beautiful, this book will haunt your dreams. Reid delivers in every way--from the atmospheric house by the sea to the achingly hopeful romance to the examination of power, gender, and control, A Study in Drowning ruins and rebuilds you." - Vaishnavi Patel

"Achingly atmospheric and beautifully sharp, A Study in Drowning will draw you in from the first page." - Rory Power

"Incandescent, tender, and fierce. A Study in Drowning is a deftly woven mystery, brimming with lyrical writing and compelling characters who will steal your heart. This is a story that lingers, long after the last word." - Rebecca Ross

"Drenched in atmosphere, and as wondrous and haunting as a dream half-remembered. A Study in Drowning is a love letter to stories - and to everyone silenced or forgotten in their retelling. Effy and Preston are spectacular leads, tenderly drawn and sure to win readers' hearts as they've won mine." - Allison Saft

"This is one of those books that makes you remember why we read in the first place. A Study in Drowning takes dark academia to magical new heights. Reid is a singular, extraordinary talent." - Sasha Peyton Smith

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