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A Study in Drowning

A Study in Drowning

RRP: £99
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Effy experiences a transformation in this book. What character strengths does Effy show that make her growth possible? How is she courageous? What helps her persevere? What about her integrity? I wish Effy was less relatable and that her experiences were conscripted to the past. However, this is still an accurate reality, fairytale beauty or not.

The sea took and took and took, thousands of little deaths, and they endured it all because they knew nothing else. They didn't think to fear the Drowning until the water was lapping at their door. The story revolves around young Effy Sayre, who is delicate and dealing with hallucinations of the Fairy King since her childhood. She is the only woman student in the architecture department, even though she dreamed of focusing her studies on literature: she can recite the entire words of Emrys Myrddin's Angharad. She is socially outcasted after rumors about her involvement with her adviser professor. She is so close to getting dropped from the faculty, failing from classes, and her neglectful, alcoholic mother has no intention of doing anything with her. Her favorite author, Myrddin's death, also affected her deeply. The book he has written is the only thing that can empower her to fight against her nighttime terrors. This book was so good! This was a mysterious and dark historical fantasy about power, misogyny, love, and finding yourself. A Study in Drowning follows Effy, is an architecture student at a prestigious college who has a chance to redesign her favorite author's estate. When she arrives Preston, a student from the literature school is trying to find evidence that her favorite author is a fraud. Effy soon discovers dangerous secrets that will change her view on the world.

Recent Comments

A Study in Drowning is, not an exaggeration, a masterpiece. I’ve been an Ava Reid fan since The Wolf and the Woodsman but their newest instalment has made it extremely obviously that she will forever be one of my favourite authors. Their ability to meld together folklore, tender romance, a truly gripping plot and a nuanced portrayal of trauma and recovery is absolutely masterful. A Study in Drowning hit me right in the stomach, drawing up feelings around growing up as a girl trying to proof herself, of wishing to take up space, and of navigating the dangerous waters of who to trust— including yourself. Drawing from Welsh folklore, ASID follows the story of Effy, a young student of architecture, though her true passion lies in literature even if the school doesn’t permit women. When she gets the chance to design a home for her favourite author Myrddin‘s son at their ancestral home, she jumps at the chance despite her fear of what she might uncover while she’s there. At Hiraeth, Effy encounters a smug and mercurial fellow academic, a boy called Preston, and Myrddin’s son. Soon, Effy and Preston join forces to investigate the mysterious author’s legacy, especially around Effy’s favourite story Angharad, or the story of a young woman and the fabled Fairy King. As Effy and Preston draw closer to the truth and myth comes to life, they realise the origin to the story might be far closer than they ever could’ve imagined.

As a fantasy, I wished we had a bit more worldbuilding and context regarding the hate, war and the drownings. A map would have been nice as well, I don’t know if the final version has it or not. A combination of the Whispering Dark and Divine Rivals mixed with some Barbie movie America Ferrera speech messaging about sexism (imo for 5 year olds but yymv bc some girlies loved that)"

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Part scholarly mystery, part dark fairytale, Ava Reid’s first young adult novel is, at its heart, a coming-of-age story about survival, about believing women—about giving them the place they rightfully deserve, against men who take and take and take. I’m not sure the dark academia label really fits, but I know these things are muddy, and my personal experience with dark academia makes it harder for me to recognize it when the story doesn’t involve queer characters and messed-up relationships’ dynamics, so this opinion may vary. Who cares, really, though, when the book is wonderful? Our main character, Effy, loves the book 'Angharad' more than anything, it connects with her on a level deeper than the male scholars could ever possibly understand. It's a story that sings to her truth, it provides her shelter and comfort from the storm of her reality, and it gives her courage to rewrite her own history. I think every book lover can relate to the feeling of having that one book that speaks to you, that one story that feels like it was written just for you (mine is He Who Drowned the World by Shelley Parker-Chan). The estate of Llyr’s national author EMRYS MYRDDIN is soliciting designs for a manor home outside the late author’s hometown of Saltney, Bay of Nine Bells.



  • Fruugo ID: 258392218-563234582
  • EAN: 764486781913
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