The Book of Speculation: A Novel

3.59 avg rating
( 23,176 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9781250055637: The Book of Speculation: A Novel
View all copies of this ISBN edition:
 
 

One of BuzzFeed's 24 Best Fiction Books of 2015

**Includes a bonus short story by Erika Swyler, "The Mermaid Girl"**

"As Simon, a lonely research librarian, searches frantically for the key to a curse that might be killing the women in his family, he learns strange and fascinating secrets about their past. A tale full of magic and family mystery, The Book of Speculation will keep you up all night reading."―Isaac Fitzgerald, BuzzFeed

Simon Watson, a young librarian, lives alone in a house that is slowly crumbling toward the Long Island Sound. His parents are long dead. His mother, a circus mermaid who made her living by holding her breath, drowned in the very water his house overlooks. His younger sister, Enola, ran off six years ago and now reads tarot cards for a traveling carnival.

One June day, an old book arrives on Simon's doorstep, sent by an antiquarian bookseller who purchased it on speculation. Fragile and water damaged, the book is a log from the owner of a traveling carnival in the 1700s, who reports strange and magical things, including the drowning death of a circus mermaid. Since then, generations of "mermaids" in Simon's family have drowned--always on July 24, which is only weeks away.

As his friend Alice looks on with alarm, Simon becomes increasingly worried about his sister. Could there be a curse on Simon's family? What does it have to do with the book, and can he get to the heart of the mystery in time to save Enola?

In the tradition of Sara Gruen's Water for Elephants, Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus, and Elizabeth Kostova's The Historian, The Book of Speculation--with two-color illustrations by the author--is Erika Swyler's moving debut novel about the power of books, family, and magic.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

Review:

An Amazon Best Book of June 2015: Water shrouds the fascinating, often doomed characters of The Book of Speculation. Featuring mermaids, swarms of horseshoe crabs, deadly floods, and the silent secrets of an ancient tarot deck, The Book of Speculation is split like a savory peach between the odd ventures of a traveling carnival in the late 1700s and the modern-day discovery by librarian Simon Watson of an old, handwritten volume containing his grandmother’s name. The water-damaged book may reveal the root of certain mysteries in his family, such as why the women can hold their breath far, far longer than normal, and the inexplicable reason they have all drowned while young women on the exact same date—a date that is only a few days away as the book begins. When Simon’s sister, Enola, unexpectedly returns home, vibrating with an angry sadness Simon has never seen before, Simon dives deeper into the book and the dark waters of their family history, hoping to change what he fears is her destiny. Erika Swyler has written an engrossing literary tale-spinner with an assurance rarely mastered in debut novels, allowing a well-placed detail or a lyrical phrase to paint a character or sketch even as she builds tension like a pro. As Simon grows obsessed with unraveling the secrets in his book, so will you become bewitched by The Book of Speculation.--Adrian Liang

About the Author:

ERIKA SWYLER is a graduate of New York University. Her short fiction has appeared in WomenArts Quarterly Journal, Litro, Anderbo.com, and elsewhere. Her writing is featured in the anthology Colonial Comics, and her work as a playwright has received note from the Jane Chambers Award. Born and raised on Long Island's North Shore, Erika learned to swim before she could walk, and happily spent all her money at traveling carnivals. She blogs and has a baking Tumblr with a following of 60,000. Erika recently moved from Brooklyn back to her hometown, which inspired the setting of the book. The Book of Speculation is her debut novel.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9781250054807: The Book of Speculation: A Novel

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  125005480X ISBN 13:  9781250054807
Publisher: St. Martin's Press, 2015
Hardcover

9781782397649: The Book of Speculation

Corvus, 2016
Softcover

9781782397762: The Book of Speculation

Atlant..., 2001
Hardcover

9781410482433: The Book Of Speculation (Thorndike Press Large Print Basic)

Thornd..., 2015
Hardcover

9781782397632: The Book of Speculation

St Mar..., 2015
Softcover

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Monky Business: briansmonky
(Worcester, MA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636 Ask about discounted shipping available when multiple items are purchased at the same time. FAST, RELIABLE, GUARANTEED and happily SHIPPED WITHIN 1 BUSINESS DAY! INTERNATIONAL: IF item is heavy additional shipping cost MAY be required. Seller Inventory # BX18-1436

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 3.59
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.50
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Erika Swyler
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Sharehousegoods
(Milwaukee, WI, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Condition: New. This is a brand new book! Fast Shipping - Safe and Secure Mailer - Our goal is to deliver a better item than what you are hoping for! If not we will make it right!. Seller Inventory # 1XG6FQ000Z9G_ns

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 5.49
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Swyler Erika
Published by MacMillan Publishers
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller:
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description MacMillan Publishers. Condition: New. Brand New. Seller Inventory # 1250055636

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 8.37
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.60
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin 2016-05-31 (2016)
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New Paperback Quantity Available: 18
Seller:
BookOutlet
(Thorold, ON, Canada)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin 2016-05-31, 2016. Paperback. Condition: New. Paperback. Publisher overstock, may contain remainder mark on edge. Seller Inventory # 9781250055637B

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 5.99
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 6.00
From Canada to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Booklot COM LLC
(Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636. Seller Inventory # Z1250055636ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 13.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Mega Buzz
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636. Seller Inventory # Z1250055636ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 13.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Best Bates
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636. Seller Inventory # Z1250055636ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 13.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Bookhouse COM LLC
(Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636. Seller Inventory # Z1250055636ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 13.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
BookShop4U
(PHILADELPHIA, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636. Seller Inventory # Z1250055636ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 13.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Swyler, Erika
Published by St. Martin's Griffin
ISBN 10: 1250055636 ISBN 13: 9781250055637
New PAPERBACK Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Qwestbooks COM LLC
(Bensalem, PA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description St. Martin's Griffin. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 1250055636. Seller Inventory # Z1250055636ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 13.18
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book