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Island Witch

Island Witch

Current price: $28.00
Publication Date: February 20th, 2024
Publisher:
Berkley
ISBN:
9780593549261
Pages:
384
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Description

"Every once in a while, a book comes along that drops you into another world and takes you places you never could imagine. This is that book. An astounding accomplishment!"
R. L. Stine, author of Goosebumps

Set in 19th century Sri Lanka and inspired by local folklore, the daughter of a traditional demon-priest—relentlessly bullied by peers and accused of witchcraft herself—tries to solve the mysterious attacks that have been terrorizing her coastal village.

Being the daughter of the village Capuwa, or demon-priest, Amara is used to keeping mostly to herself. Influenced by the new religious practices brought in by the British Colonizers, the villagers who once respected her father’s craft have turned on the family. Yet, they all still seem to call on him whenever supernatural disturbances arise.

Now someone—or something—is viciously seizing upon men in the jungle. But instead of enlisting Amara’s father’s help, the villages have accused him of carrying out the attacks himself.

As she tries to clear her father’s name, Amara finds herself haunted by dreams that eerily predict the dark forces on her island. And she can’t shake the feeling that it’s all connected to the night she was recovering from a strange illness, and woke up, scared and confused, to hear her mother’s frantic cries: No one can find out what happened.

About the Author

Amanda Jayatissa is the author of My Sweet Girl, which won the International Thriller Writer’s Award for Best First Novel, and You're Invited. She grew up in Sri Lanka, and currently lives in Portugal with her husband and two spoiled huskies.

Praise for Island Witch

Praise for Island Witch

"Every once in a while, a book comes along that drops you into another world and takes you places you never could imagine. This is that book. An astounding accomplishment!"
R. L. Stine, author of Goosebumps and Fear Street

“In Island Witch, Jayatissa blends a coming-of-age story with a violent supernatural tale and a critique of colonialism….Unique and rich, this book is a welcome addition to the growing list of horror narratives by underrepresented voices that focus on previously ignored identities, cultures and traditions while simultaneously criticizing hegemonic powers.”
The New York Times

“The twists and turns to this fantastical mystery, as well as the author’s commentary on colorism, colonialism, and feminine outrage, shine through.” 
Kirkus

“Tense and twisty, Island Witch is a fierce exploration of a young woman’s rage and two kinds of demons: the ones that thrive in the darkness of the jungle, yes, but also those that lurk under the skin of people you thought you could trust. This is razor-sharp anticolonial historical horror with the heart of a thriller, and it kept me feverishly turning the pages long into the night.”
Isabel Cañas, USA Today bestselling author of Vampires of El Norte

“Offers a compelling addition to the growing body of horror novels exploring the evils of colonization.”
Booklist

"Jayatissa’s novel is steeped in folkloric traditions and sumptuous landscapes for a thrilling, feverish read."
CrimeReads

"Raw, brutal, and beautiful, Jayatissa pulls no punches in Island Witch, both a devastating historical retelling of a reviled demoness from Sri Lankan lore and a thrilling murder mystery. In this haunting, rage-filled story, Jayatissa gives voice to feared women, women at the margins, women for whom villainy is the closest thing to justice. A stunning achievement."
Ashley Winstead, author of Midnight is the Darkest Hour

"While rich in the culture and atmosphere of Sri Lanka, Island Witch isn’t a blanket excoriation of colonization. It is, instead, a nuanced examination of the constant struggle between ethics and rationalization, between compassion and oppression."
Criminal Element

“Let’s face it, there are few things more horrific than colonization.”
Ms. Magazine

“An unusual treat—a rare work set in Sri Lanka, well-researched, and written with a deep understanding of place and time.”
Historical Novel Society

“Jayatissa infuses the plot with constant terror, and the finale is so fiery that it called to mind the last chapters of Carrie.”
Bookreporter

Praise for You're Invited

"Filled with kaleidoscope twists and turns I could not turn the pages fast enough in this delicious follow-up to My Sweet Girl. When Amaya receives an invitation to the lavish Sri Lankan wedding of her ex-boyfriend and her ex-best friend, her decision to attend is only the first mystery at the heart of this unputdownable thriller." 
Greer Hendricks, #1 New York Times bestselling co-author of The Wife Between Us

"Whip smart and expertly plotted with perfectly arranged clues and an explosive finale…will have readers guessing who they can trust and who the real villain is in this wickedly good thriller."
Mary Kubica, New York Times bestselling author of Local Woman Missing

You're Invited reads like Crazy Rich Asians' deranged, bloodthirsty sister—slick, twisted, and relentlessly juicy. Amanda Jayatissa's sophomore thriller is both a dizzying hall-of-mirrors pageturner and a cutting examination of privilege, power, and complex female friendships. I couldn't put it down.”
Andrea Bartz, New York Times bestselling author of We Were Never Here

"Amanda Jayatissa’s atmospheric novel careens toward a sinister ending that has readers questioning everything and reminds us to keep our enemies close – but our friends and family closer."
NPR

"This story is deliciously messy...Buckle up. This is a psychological thriller with corkscrew-tight twists and surprising depth as the novel explores issues of class, identity, and friendship."
Oprah Daily