“The Mesmerist’s Daughter” by Heidi James

The Mesmerist's Daughter by Heidi James

Winner of the 2015 Saboteur Award for Best Novella.

Heidi James’s novella The Mesmerist’s Daughter – published on Monday 27th April 2015 – is the hypnotic tale of a child with a wolf for a mother. The narrative of this haunting story hovers somewhere between memory and delusion, as a woman closeted in a psychiatric facility recounts the tale of a particularly difficult time in her childhood. James’s writing is highly-detailed and immediate, each page bursting with details so fresh that they’re almost tangible. From the opening sentence The Mesmerist’s Daughter is as unsettling as it is magical, as arresting as it is darkly evocative.

Selected as the winner of the Best Novella category at the 2015 Saboteur Awards, this short tale has been called “a powerful and most impressive piece of writing“, as well as “an elegantly crafted exploration of the grotesque and femininity“. Read a fantastic review by Sabotage Reviews online here.

Heidi James’s novel Wounding was published in April last year by Bluemoose Books. Her poetry has been published in various magazines and anthologies including Neon and Lung Jazz, an anthology for Oxfam. She was the runner up for the Cinnamon Poetry Collection Prize.

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