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An Amazon Best Book of August 2021 / An Amazon Editor’s Choice: Best of Mystery, Thriller, and Suspense / The Millions: Most Anticipated / The Observer: Best New Summer Reads / USA Today: Five Books Not to Miss
New York Times bestselling author Miranda Beverly-Whittemore’s Fierce Little Thing is a mesmerizing story of friendship and its reckonings.
“It’s time to come Home. All five of you. Or else.”
Saskia was a damaged, lonely teenager when she arrived at the lakeside commune called Home. She was entranced by the tang of sourdough starter; the midnight call of the loons; the triumph of foraging wild mushrooms from the forest floor. But most of all she was taken with Abraham, Home’s charismatic leader, the North Star to Saskia and the four other teens who lived there, her best and only friends.””
Two decades later, Saskia is shuttered in her Connecticut estate, estranged from the others. Her carefully walled life is torn open by threatening letters. Unless she and her former friends return to the land in rural Maine, the terrible thing they did as teenagers—their last-ditch attempt to save Home—will be revealed.
From vastly different lives, the five return to confront their blackmailer and reckon with the horror that split them apart. How far will they go to bury their secret forever?
“Intriguing and occasionally maddening…A murder mystery, a character study, an exploration of guilt and responsibility, an account of a utopian community gone awry…There are so many lovely moments in the book, beautiful passages of writing that speak to Beverly-Whittemore’s empathy and lyrical powers of description… [Saskia] is a fascinating character, her strengths and flaws equally interesting.”―New York Times Book Review
“Cathartic and beautifully written, Fierce Little Thing blends horror and friendship to stunning effect.” – An Amazon Best Book of August 2021
“Written in beautiful prose…Captivating, thoughtful, and tense, a great read for those who enjoy psychological thrillers and complex puzzles. Highly recommended.”―New York Journal Review of Books
“Ambitious, mesmerizing…what she does here is unique…Nail-biting, moody and every bit as compelling as the cult leader at its center, Fierce Little Thing is a powerful coming-of-age tale about the ways that we are forever changed by the traumas, lies and betrayals of our youth.” ―Book Reporter
“A Secret History-esque tale of suspense about a group of childhood friends and the secret that haunts their adulthood. The book’s got all the ingredients for the perfect summer read: short breathless chapters; a sinister cult in the wilds of Maine; and beautiful, sharp prose.”―The Millions’ Most Anticipated: The Great Second-Half 2021 Book Preview
“If what you’re looking for is a smart, suspenseful escape, look no further. Miranda Beverly-Whittemore’s Fierce Little Thing is a propulsive thriller full of rich detail and a story that won’t quit.” —Observer’s Best New Summer Reads
“Deftly ratchets up the tension…Avoiding the expected storyline…Beverly-Whittemore crafts something else entirely as the sins of the past come home to roost. A compelling study of power, sociopathy, and the possibilities of survival.”—Kirkus, Starred review
“Beverly-Whittemore delivers a twisty, rewarding tale of friendship, secrets, and childhood trauma. Donna Tartt fans, take note.” —Publisher’s Weekly
“With its propulsive momentum and its lush world, Fierce Little Thing kept me up late at night and splintered into my dreams. I experienced this novel with my whole body—tasted its sourdough, smelled its hand-dug latrines, heard its crackling pine needles and whispered secrets—and felt charged and changed by its explorations of the ways our adult lives keep circling the wounds and betrayals of childhood—as well as its sharp, tender insistence on the ways darkness and beauty sit side by side.” —Leslie Jamison, New York Times bestselling author of The Empathy Exams
“Fierce Little Thing is Miranda Beverly-Whittemore at her finest. A moody, gripping, and profoundly haunting story of a young girl desperate for connection and salvation. Beverly-Whittemore renders a wild, treacherous world and invites us to stand perilously close to the edge.” —Taylor Jenkins Reid, New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones & The Six
“Gorgeously written and brilliantly structured, Fierce Little Thing is a suspenseful, evocative coming of age tale about the unique worth of old friendships and the profound challenge of finding your true place in the world.” —Kimberly McCreight, New York Times bestselling author of A Good Marriage
“Fierce Little Thing devoured me whole. It is at once a propulsive, perfectly plotted thriller and an exquisitely written, marvelously dark coming of age story. Once I opened it, I couldn’t stop turning the pages. Once I finished it, it continued to haunt my thoughts. A spectacular and consuming read.”–Cristina Alger, New York Times bestselling author of Girls Like Us
“A stubborn, elegant, terrifying study of human nature that manages to catch hold of the blur of human consciousness, the way reality shifts under us. If Donna Tartt and Shirley Jackson had a beautiful, terrifying baby it would be Miranda Beverly-Whittemore.” – Rufi Thorpe, author of PEN/Faulkner nominated The Knockout Queen
“Exquisite narrative…Plenty of light still gets in through [Saskia’s] wonder at the newly discovered natural world around her and the extraordinary friendships she forms…Saskia is strongly reminiscent of Donna Tartt’s Harriet (The Little Friend) and Shirley Jackson’s Merricat (We Have Always Lived in the Castle)….Teenager Saskia will have strong appeal for YA readers.”―Booklist