Dark Roots


By Cate Kennedy

cover image of Dark Roots

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“Heartbreakingly detailed . . . vibrant—and vital” prize-winning stories by an Australian contributor to The New Yorker (Entertainment Weekly).
In this “coolly exact . . . sharp, evocative and often poetic” collection of award-winning short fiction, Cate Kennedy daringly travels to the deepest depths of the human psyche to explore the collision between simmering inner lives, the cold outside world, and the hidden motivations that propel us all to act (The New York Times Book Review).
Kennedy captures entire lives, expertly documenting the risks and compromises made in both forging and escaping relationships. Her “17 standout stories” are populated by people on the brink: whether it’s a woman floundering with her own loss and emotional immobility as her lover lies in a coma; a neglected wife who cannot convince her husband of the truth about his two brutish, shamelessly libidinous friends; or a married woman who comes to realize that her too-tight wedding ring isn’t the only thing that’s stuck in her relationship (Elle). Each character must make a choice and none is without consequence—even the smallest decisions have the power to destroy or renew, to recover and relinquish.
Devastating, evocative, richly comic, and “full of provocative messages, tantalizingly revealed”, Dark Roots deftly unveils the traumas that incite us to desperate measures and the coincidences that drive our lives (O, The Oprah Magazine). “With an effortless talent for the comic and the chilling, Cate Kennedy has crafted stories that are sly, seductive, and surprising. A standout debut” (Alicia Erian, author of Towelhead).
Dark Roots