Come Closer

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Come Closer

by Sara Gran

Soho Press | May 31, 2011 | Trade Paperback

Come Closer is rated 3 out of 5 by 2.
A recurrent, unidentifiable noise in her apartment. A memo to her boss that''s replaced by obscene insults. Amanda—a successful architect in a happy marriage—finds her life going off kilter by degrees. She starts smoking again, and one night for no reason, without even the knowledge that she''s doing it, she burns her husband with a cigarette. At night she dreams of a beautiful woman with pointed teeth on the shore of a blood-red sea.
 
The new voice in Amanda''s head, the one that tells her to steal things and talk to strange men in bars, is strange and frightening, and Amanda struggles to wrest back control of her life. A book on demon possession suggests that the figure on the shore could be the demon Naamah, known to scholars of the Kabbalah as the second wife of Adam, who stole into his dreams and tricked him into fathering her child. Whatever the case, as the violence of her erratic behavior increases, Amanda knows that she must act to put her life right, or see it destroyed.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 8.01 × 5 × 0.47 in

Published: May 31, 2011

Publisher: Soho Press

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1616951001

ISBN - 13: 9781616951009

Found in: Fiction and Literature

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Reviews

Rated 2 out of 5 by from A modern day horror story... I dunno. Margot Livesey said "Come Closer ought to carry a warning to readers. It's impossible to begin this intense, clever, beautifully written novel without turning every page." And Stewart O'Nan said: "Sara Gran has created a sly, satisfying novel of one young woman possessed not only by a demon but also by her own secret desires." I quote these two reviews because I have read both Livesey and O'Nan and admire their writing. Believing their assessment of this book is sort of like reading fanfic recced by an author you like. You sort of hope they'll point you in the direction of the good stuff. And while Gran's novel isn't exactly what I'd call the good stuff- it wasn't rotten, either. Amanda is an architect who lives with her wonderful husband, Ed, in an unnamed American city. We don't get any real insight into Amanda's life before weird things start to happen: funny noises in her home, strange and troubling dreams, black outs, missing time she can't account for. These events transpire in little snippets. Things happen, we hear about them and then we're on to the next thing. I never really felt connected to Amanda. I didn't fear for her or care for her and if the novel has a failing for me, that's probably it. As Amanda says herself: "What we think is impossible happens all the time." And sometimes those impossible occurrences are horrific. Just not in this book. (Which is apparently being made into a flick.)
Date published: 2013-10-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Four Flaming Pitchforks Up! This book hit so close to home, it scared the sanity out of me. Everything about Amanda reflected major aspects of my life onto the page, pulling me in like an invisible lead on a collar. I couldn’t help but fall in love with her. Some people might call her plain, or boring. I, however, found her “normal” nature and “normal” issues to be an intriguing characteristic in this type of novel. Too often characters in this genre are so over the top that they become completely unbelievable, unreal, thereby crushing any credibility the story might have held. Amanda couldn’t be more real if she sat snuggled up beside you on the couch, breathing softly against your neck as you read to yourself. All the characters are realistic. These people could be co-workers, friends or even family; I feel I know them so well. The story on a whole rarely came off sounding false. I had to keep pouring back over events in my own life to see if perhaps I could be suffering from a similar scenario. Evil is everywhere. It could lurk inside your mailman, your pharmacist, your daycare worker or nanny. No one is immune. Who knows, perhaps there’s a demon inside me right now screaming to be let out, and you wouldn’t even know it until it was too late. Is there one in you? There are no flowers or puppies or choirs of angels in this story, so break out the pitchfork and welcome to Hell! There was no fluff to this novel. Clocking in at a scant 192 pages, the pacing was perfection. Sara Gran expertly uses the rule that states you should only write to advance character or plot, nothing more. I was extremely ecstatic to find that the author followed through all the way to the end, tying everything off exactly the way I hope. This woman has balls and isn’t afraid to write the way the story should be told, rather than the way the Powers That Be want it told. Her writing style flowed with ease, making for an effortless read. The only thing that grated on my nerves, like fingernails on a chalkboard, was Amanda’s husband, Ed. He is overly observant and prone to picking at details, but conveniently becomes blind to the glaring differences that manifest in his wife. I found it very hard to swallow that he could so easily overlook certain actions that should have alerted him to Amanda’s plunge into despair, such as the sudden reintegration of habits that she had given up years ago to better their relationship. I give this book 4 flaming pitchforks. It was so close to perfection, (minus the hubby slip), that I would encourage everyone to rush out and grab it now--grab it in trade paperback, don’t wait for the mass market edition. Indulge yourself, read it over and over, and descend into darkness.
Date published: 2013-10-24

– More About This Product –

Come Closer

by Sara Gran

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 8.01 × 5 × 0.47 in

Published: May 31, 2011

Publisher: Soho Press

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1616951001

ISBN - 13: 9781616951009

About the Book

A recurrent, unidentifiable noise in her apartment. A memo to her boss that's replaced by obscene insults. Amanda--a successful architect in a happy marriage--finds her life going off kilter by degrees. She starts smoking again, and one night for no reason, without even the knowledge that she's doing it, she burns her husband with a cigarette. At night she dreams of a beautiful woman with pointed teeth on the shore of a blood-red sea.
The new voice in Amanda's head, the one that tells her to steal things and talk to strange men in bars, is strange and frightening, and Amanda struggles to wrest back control of her life. A book on demon possession suggests that the figure on the shore could be the demon Naamah, known to scholars of the Kabbalah as the second wife of Adam, who stole into his dreams and tricked him into fathering her child. Whatever the case, as the violence of her erratic behavior increases, Amanda knows that she must act to put her life right, or see it destroyed.

Read from the Book

1 IN JANUARY I HAD A proposal due to my boss, Leon Fields, on a new project. We were renovating a clothing store in a strip mall outside the city. Nothing tremendous. I finished the proposal on a Friday morning and dropped it on his desk with a cheerful little note—“Let me know what you think!”—while he was in a meeting with a new client in the conference room. Later that morning Leon threw open his office door with a bang. “Amanda!” he called. “Come in here.”   I rushed to his office. He picked up a handful of papers off his desk and stared at me, his flabby face white with anger. “What the hell is this?” “I don’t know.” It looked like my proposal—same heading, same format. My hands shook. I couldn’t imagine what was wrong. Leon handed me the papers and I read the first line: Leon Fields is a cocksucking faggot. “What is this?” I asked Leon. He stared at me. “You tell me. You just dropped it on my desk.” My head spun. “What are you talking about? I put the proposal on your desk, not this, the proposal for the new job.” I sifted through the papers on his desk for the proposal I had dropped off. “What is this, a joke?” “Amanda,” he said. “Three people said they saw you go to the printer, print this out, and bring it to my desk.” I felt like I had stepped into a bad dream. There was no logic, no reason anymore. &l
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From the Publisher

A recurrent, unidentifiable noise in her apartment. A memo to her boss that''s replaced by obscene insults. Amanda—a successful architect in a happy marriage—finds her life going off kilter by degrees. She starts smoking again, and one night for no reason, without even the knowledge that she''s doing it, she burns her husband with a cigarette. At night she dreams of a beautiful woman with pointed teeth on the shore of a blood-red sea.
 
The new voice in Amanda''s head, the one that tells her to steal things and talk to strange men in bars, is strange and frightening, and Amanda struggles to wrest back control of her life. A book on demon possession suggests that the figure on the shore could be the demon Naamah, known to scholars of the Kabbalah as the second wife of Adam, who stole into his dreams and tricked him into fathering her child. Whatever the case, as the violence of her erratic behavior increases, Amanda knows that she must act to put her life right, or see it destroyed.

About the Author

Sara Gran is the author of the novels Saturn''s Return to New York, Dope, and Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead, the first in a detective series.  Her work has been published in over a dozen countries and in nearly twice as many magazines, newspapers, and literary journals. Born and raised in Brooklyn, Sara Gran now lives in California.

Editorial Reviews

“What begins as a sly fable about frustrated desire evolves into a genuinely scary novel about possession and insanity. Hypnotic, disturbing, and written with such unerring confidence you believe every word, Come Closer is one of the most precise and graceful pieces of fiction I''ve read in a long time.” —Bret Easton Ellis   “Ideal for an evening’s reading, with a kick that will stay with the reader for days afterward.” — Dallas Morning News   “Sara Gran has written an intelligent horror story, a literary creepshow that works its magic subtly and well.  It’s a marvel of restraint and taste, and still it worms its way under your skin and stays there.” —Darin Strauss   “Sara Gran’s Come Closer ought to carry a warning to readers.  It’s impossible to begin this intense, clever, beautifully written novel without turning every page.  A wonderful accomplishment.” —Margot Livesey   “I read Come Closer on the train, in a snowstorm, on a cold December night.  It was the right atmosphere for this perfectly noirish tale of madness and love.  Author Sara Gran writes with scalpel-like clarity, expertly blending tones to create a new kind of psychological thriller.  I loved this book.  Days after finishing it, it has not left my mind.” —George Pelecanos   “‘What we think is impossible happens all the time.&
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