Publication Date: June 25, 2024
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ONE OF NPR'S BEST BOOKS OF 2023 • INSTANT IRISH TIMES #1 BESTSELLER • ONE OF ELECTRIC LITERATURE'S MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF THE YEAR • “A spectacular read for Donna Tartt and Tana French fans.” (Kirkus, Starred Review), this gripping literary page-turner traces the lives of former friends, estranged for fifteen years, as they reckon with the terrifying events of the summer that changed their lives.
“A master class in building suspense…Walsh manages a deft balance between adolescent angst and ecstasy — discoveries bringing horror, sorrow and joy — and the more deliberate, often elegiac reflections of adulthood, reckoning with the promises of the past." —The Washington Post
In the seaside town of Kinlough, on Ireland’s west coast, three old friends are thrown together for the first time in years. Helen, Joe, and Mushwere part of an original group of six inseparable teenagers in the summer of 2003, with motherless, reckless Kala Lanann as their group’s white-hot center. Soon after that summer’s peak, Kala disappeared without a trace.
Now it’s fifteen years later. Helen has reluctantly returned to Ireland for her father’s wedding; Joe is a world-famous musician, newly back in town; and Mush has never left, too scared to venture beyond the counter of his mother’s café.
But human remains have been discovered in the woods. Two more girls have gone missing. As past and present begin to collide, the estranged friends are forced to confront their own complicity in the events that led to Kala’s disappearance.
Against the backdrop of a town suffocating on its own secrets, in a story that builds from a smolder to a stunning climax, Kala brilliantly examines the sometimes brutal costs of belonging, as well as the battle in the human heart between vengeance and forgiveness, despair and redemption.
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