'A dark jewel reflecting something startling - familiar and strange' Suzanne Moore, Guardian 'Ravishingly beautiful' Observer 'Excruciatingly honest and yet vibrantly creative' Irish Times 'Provocative and rich' Economist 'Daring, chilling, and unlike anything else you've ever read' Esquire 'An absolute must-read for 2020' Stylist
In the Dream House is Carmen Maria Machado's engrossing and wildly innovative account of a relationship gone bad. Tracing the full arc of a harrowing experience with a charismatic but volatile woman, this is a bold dissection of the mechanisms and cultural representations of psychological abuse.
Each chapter views the relationship through a different lens, as Machado holds events up to the light and examines them from distinct angles. She casts a critical eye over legal proceedings, fairy tales, Star Trek and Disney villains, as well as iconic works of film and fiction, infusing all with her characteristic wit, playfulness and openness to enquiry. The result is a powerful book that explodes our ideas about what a memoir can do and be.
For all the horror, In the Dream House is a ravishingly beautiful book, a tender, incandescent memoir like no other. There's no doubt that Machado is one of the brightest literary talents around. (Johanna Thomas-Corr Observer)
This is challenging and thrilling. There is never one reading. Memoir here is resurrection, rebirth and archive. In the Dream House is a dark jewel reflecting something startling - familiar and strange. (Guardian)
Untamed, original and brilliantly unclassifiable ... brave, experimentally wrought (New Statesman)
Absolutely remarkable ... What makes this book truly exceptional is how Machado creates an archive where, shamefully, there is none (Roxane Gay)
This book is devastating. Machado is a sublime, phenomenal, breathtakingly good writer and a new work by her is a momentous occasion.(Daisy Johnson)
Merge the house and the woman-watch the woman experience her own body as a haunted house, a place of sudden, inexplicable terrors-and you are reading the blazingly talented Carmen Maria Machado. (Parul Sehgal The New York Times)
Machado's genre-crushing memoir is a meditation on the eclipse of knowledge and intuition by the narcotic light of a destructive bond that feels like love. (Melissa Broder)
Innovative and haunting, compelling and jarring, Machado has created what is essentially a new form of memoir ... excruciatingly honest and yet vibrantly creative (Irish Times)
Provocative and rich ... the cycle of abuse is a kind of poisonous enchantment in which victims can be enthralled. Ms Machado's memoir casts a powerful counter-spell (Economist)
'Astonishing ... Machado writes with such precision and poetry it's hard not to be utterly blown away as she pinpoints those moments that can cause the destruction of all relationships. An absolute must-read for 2020.' (Stylist)