Title: The Water Cure
Author: Sophie Mackintosh
From the back: Imagine a world very close to our own: where women are not safe in their bodies, where desperate measures are required to raise a daughter. This is the story of Grace, Lia and Sky, kept apart from the world for their own good and taught the terrible things that every woman must learn about love. And it is the story of the men who come to find them – three strangers washed up by the sea, their gazes hungry and insistent, trailing desire and destruction in their wake.
The Water Cure is a fever dream, a blazing vision of suffering, sisterhood and transformation.
The gist: What a beautiful, dark book. It reads a little like you’re floating. Somewhere between being caught in a heat haze and drowning in a slightly cloudy yard pool. There’s something delicate about this book, something ever-so-slightly ethereal. And yet, something dark and unnerving.
It’s not a book with hard edges – it’s not something you’ll enjoy if you love joined up endings and matter-of-face plotlines. But if your reading tipple is composed of beautifully poetic prose, writing that lets you fill in the gaps (or leave them there) then this is for you.
It’s a dark, playful exploration of growing up, of being a girl, and of control with a haunting quality that will stay with you long after you finish it.
And if you needed any other reasons to read it; it has strains of Margaret Atwood, of The Virgin Suicides, and of Dogtooth.
[Interlude: if you haven’t seen Dogtooth I highly recommend it. It’s a darkly surreal Greek film, and on my top ten list]
Others have called the book ‘odd’ – and I agree. It’s odd like ‘the fascinating trinket you find in the back of a drawer.’ It’s odd like ‘the dream you can only just remember when you wake up.’ It’s odd like ‘have you seen the news recently?’
And, most interestingly – it’s uncomfortable, which is almost always a good thing.
Favourite line: We are lucky, because we have been exposed to minimal damage.
Read if: You want to feel like you stood up a bit too quickly on a very hot day (in a good way).
Read with: Margaret Atwood (tbf just do everything with Margaret Atwood)
Get it: The Water Cure by Sophie Mackintosh (release date May 2018)
I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.