A top ten New York Times bestseller. With the haunting emotional power of American Dirt and the atmospheric suspense of Where the Crawdads Sing: a compulsive debut novel that explores the aftershock of a brutal crime on the women of a small Texas oil town.
‘The very definition of a stunning debut’ Ann Patchett
‘Brilliant, sharp, tightly wound, and devastating’ Elizabeth Gilbert
‘Quite simply one of the best books I’ve ever read’ Jeanine Cummins,
author of American Dirt
Mercy is hard in a place like this. I wished him dead before I ever saw his face…
In a place like Odessa, Texas choosing who to trust can be a dangerous game.
Mary Rose Whitehead isn’t looking for trouble – but when it shows up at her front door, she finds she can’t turn away.
Corinne Shepherd, newly widowed, wants nothing more than to mind her own business, and for everyone else to mind theirs. But when the town she has spent years rebelling against closes ranks she realises she is going to have to take a side.
Gloria Ramirez, fourteen years old and out of her depth, survives the brutality of one man only to face the indifference and prejudices of many.
When justice is as slippery as oil, and kindness becomes a hazardous act, sometimes courage is all we have to keep us alive.
'Fierce and complex, Valentine is a novel of moral urgency and breathtaking prose. This is the very definition of a stunning debut' Anne Patchett 'It is nearly impossible for me to believe that Elizabeth Wetmore is a first time novelist. How can a writer burst out of the gate with this much firepower and skill? Valentine is brilliant, sharp, tightly-wound, and devastating. Wetmore has ripped the brutal, epic landscape of West Texas out of the hands of men, and has handed the stories over (finally!) to the girls and women who have always suffered, survived, and made their mark in such a hostile world. These are some of the most fully-realized and unforgettable female characters I've ever met. They will stay with me' Elizabeth Gilbert 'In outstanding prose, Wetmore has created a handful of extraordinary women out of the dust of West Texas, 1976. They are all so real, with their hard lives lived with absolute humanity. Valentine is both heartbreaking and thrilling, I loved it' Claire Fuller, author of Bitter Orange 'The tightening terror of this first chapter is impossible to break away from, but "Valentine" is a novel that serpentines around our expectations... Wetmore has written something thrilling and thoughtful. Don't let the launch of this novelist's career be drowned out. Someday book clubs will meet again, and this would be a rousing choice.' Washington Post 'A monument to a sort of singular grace, and true grit' Entertainment Weekly 'Valentine is a gripping, galvanizing tale from a strong new voice in American fiction.' Boston Globe 'My goodness, what a novel. I clutched this book in both hands and by the end I could feel the dust of West Texas on my skin. Elizabeth Wetmore understands the nuances of the human heart better than almost any writer I've read in recent years, and I rooted for these women with everything I have ... Every person should read this extraordinary debut' Mary Beth Keane, New York Times bestselling author of Ask Again, Yes
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