The Vanishing of Katharina Linden Summary and Reviews

The Vanishing of Katharina Linden

A Novel

by Helen Grant

The Vanishing of Katharina Linden by Helen Grant X
The Vanishing of Katharina Linden by Helen Grant
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  • Published in USA  Aug 2010
    304 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

Not since The Elegance of the Hedgehog has a book arrived in America from Europe on such wings of critical praise and popularity. The Vanishing of Katharina Linden is an unforgettable debut - at once chilling and endearing, haunting and richly insightful - the story of one girl’s big heart and even bigger imagination, and of a world full of mystery, good, and evil.
 
It isn't ten-year-old Pia's fault that her grandmother dies in a freak accident. But tell that to the citizens of Pia's little German hometown of Bad Münstereifel, or to the classmates who shun her. The only one who still wants to be her friend is StinkStefan, the most unpopular child in school.

But then something else captures the community’s attention: the vanishing of Katharina Linden. Katharina was last seen on a float in a parade, dressed as Snow White. Then, like a character in a Grimm’s fairy tale, she disappears. But, this being real life, she doesn’t return.

Pia and Stefan suspect that Katharina has been spirited away by the supernatural. Their investigation is inspired by the instructive - and cautionary - local legends told to them by their elderly friend Herr Schiller, tales such as that of Unshockable Hans, visited by witches in the form of cats, or of the knight whose son is doomed to hunt forever.

Then another girl disappears, and Pia is plunged into a new and unnerving place, one far away from fairy tales - and perilously close to adulthood.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"It may seem strange to describe Grant's debut as a charming horror novel, but there's a determined amiableness about the narrative that will appeal to readers who wouldn't typically be drawn to such subject matter." - Publishers Weekly

"With a truly terrifying finale, this is a well-crafted, suspenseful blend of literary thriller and coming-of-age story." - Booklist

"Wildthorn follows a pattern familiar to admirers of Sarah Waters, with an unconventional love affair proving the key to Louisa's escape. It is a bold and thrilling read." - Amanda Craig, The Sunday Times (UK)

"The excellent writing, and the eschewing of anything remotely winsome or mawkish, make this an eerily subtle literary page-turner. Wonderful." - Laura Wilson, The Guardian (UK)

"As travel writers are always reminding us, often the best part of the fun is getting there. The same is true of The Vanishing of Katharina Linden. Steeped in spooky legends and set in a country that, for all its present-day serenity, can't fully escape the burden of its harrowing past, this is a mystery with unusual resonance." - Dennis Drabelle, The Washington Post

The information about The Vanishing of Katharina Linden shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Helen Grant Author Biography

Helen was born in London in 1964. She showed an early leaning towards the arts, having been told off for writing stories under the desk in maths lessons at school. Helen went on to read Classics at St. Hugh's College, Oxford, and then worked in marketing for ten years to fund her love of traveling. Her two most memorable traveling days were the one spent exploring Damascus in Syria and the day she went to the Raj Mandir cinema in Jaipur to see the romantic blockbuster Beta. In 2001, she and her family moved to Bad Müenstereifel in Germany. It was exploring the legends of this beautiful old town that inspired her to write her first novel, The Vanishing of Katharina Linden, which is set there.

Since then, Helen has written several novels, her recent work is a trilogy Forbidden ...

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