Creatures of Want and Ruin

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“Profound and enthralling. This book is a delicate dream, mixing its own internal mythology with a brutal tale of prejudice and human frailty. I can’t recommend it enough. Tanzer is absolutely one to watch.”
—Seanan McGuire, bestselling, award-winning author of In an Absent Dream

Amityville baywoman Ellie West fishes by day and bootlegs moonshine by night. It’s dangerous work under Prohibition—independent operators like her are despised by federal agents and mobsters alike—but Ellie’s brother was accepted to college and Ellie’s desperate to see him go. So desperate that when wealthy strangers ask her to procure libations for an extravagant party Ellie sells them everything she has, including some booze she acquired under unusual circumstances.
 
What Ellie doesn’t know is that this booze is special. Distilled from foul mushrooms by a cult of diabolists, those who drink it see terrible things—like the destruction of Long Island in fire and flood. The cult is masquerading as a church promising salvation through temperance and a return to “the good old days,” so it’s hard for Ellie to take a stand against them, especially when her father joins, but Ellie loves Long Island, and she loves her family, and she’ll do whatever it takes to ensure neither is torn apart.
 
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About the author

MOLLY TANZER is the author of Creatures of Will and Temper, Vermilion, and The Pleasure Merchant. She is also the co-editor of Mixed Up: Cocktail Recipes (and Flash Fiction) for the Discerning Drinker (and Reader).
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Additional Information

Publisher
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
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Published on
Nov 13, 2018
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Pages
352
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ISBN
9781328710352
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Fantasy / Dark Fantasy
Fiction / Fantasy / Historical
Fiction / Horror
Fiction / Occult & Supernatural
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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“A delightful, dark, and entertaining romp . . . Molly Tanzer is at the top of her form in this beautifully constructed novel.”—Jeff VanderMeer, best-selling author of the Southern Reach trilogy
 
Victorian London is a place of fluid social roles, vibrant arts culture, fin-de-siècle wonders . . . and dangerous underground diabolic cults. Fencer Evadne Gray cares for none of the former and knows nothing of the latter when she’s sent to London to chaperone her younger sister, aspiring art critic Dorina.
     At loose ends after Dorina becomes enamored with their uncle’s friend, Lady Henrietta “Henry” Wotton, a local aristocrat and aesthete, Evadne enrolls in a fencing school. There, she meets George Cantrell, an experienced fencing master like she’s always dreamed of studying under. But soon, George shows her something more than fancy footwork—he reveals to Evadne a secret, hidden world of devilish demons and their obedient servants. George has dedicated himself to eradicating demons and diabolists alike, and now he needs Evadne’s help. But as she learns more, Evadne begins to believe that Lady Henry might actually be a diabolist . . . and even worse, she suspects Dorina might have become one too.
 
Combining swordplay, the supernatural, and Victorian high society, Creatures of Will and Temper reveals a familiar but strange London in a riff on Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray that readers won't soon forget.
 
“An artful, witty, Oscar Wilde pastiche with the heart of a paranormal thriller.”—Diana Gabaldon, best-selling author of Outlander
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