A major American debut about the mysterious death of a small-town golden girl and the secret lives of three people connected to her. Intoxicating and intense, this is a novel that will keep you turning the pages late into the night.
Danya Kukafka is a graduate of New York University's Gallatin School of Individualized Study. She currently works as an assistant editor at Riverhead books. Girl in Snow is her first novel.
If you loved Paula Hawkins' The Girl on the Train, then you shouldn't miss this thriller * Southern Living * Starts with a dead high school student and keeps you glued to your seat right up until the finish. * Campus Circle * Danya Kukafka makes a compelling case for the next Girl on the Train with a fast-paced thriller about a young girl whose body is found on a school playground in the dead of winter, leaving an obsessive loner, a jealous classmate, and a police officer as the prime suspects. It's no surprise then that it garnered an accolade from Paula Hawkins herself * InStyle * A must-read . . . suspenseful and thrilling . . . an unforgettable first novel you won't want to miss * Book People Blog * Author Danya Kukafka, only 25 years old, began writing her thrilling debut while studying at NYU. With a knack for writing oh-so-real teenage characters and underline-worthy prose, she weaves a tale of voyeurism and obsession that's impossible to put down * W Magazine * Captivating * Marie Claire * This brooding and intense thriller will plunge readers into a dark world they may not want to enter - but they may be unable to tear themselves free . . . gives readers a different look into the idyllic, small-town life, and how not everything is as it appears on the surface * Booklist * Riveting . . . stark and striking . . . written with raw immediacy, each character is complex, aching and ashamed, for different reasons . . . [Kukafka's] measured pacing and withholding of information gives her novel an atmosphere of nearly painful suspense . . . a quietly taut thriller concerned with the secrets we keep from our closest loved-ones and even from ourselves . . . keeps hold of the reader long after the final denouement * Shelf Awareness * Kukafka attempts to subvert preconceptions, principally of what is expected of the thriller genre, but succeeds more pointedly in destabilizing the biases toward illegal immigration, mental illness, law enforcement, and presentations of sexuality sewn into our country's fabric . . . Kukafka expertly plays with the idealization of the golden girl . . . In many ways, the book responds to our cultural norms of self-presentation and societal expectation. By weaving these narrative perspectives together, all directed at the image of a dead female body, we gain heightened intimacy and understanding of three unique psychologies and are also forced to reckon with our own preconceived notions of beauty, gender, mental ability, and various manifestations of power. * Guernica * Combining elements of Bill Clegg's Did You Ever Have a Family with Dennis Lehane's contemporary classic Mystic River, Danya Kukafka's debut novel is an intricate, seductive murder mystery, in which a single awful crime exposes conflicts and traumas in an entire community . . . Told largely over the course of a few winter days following Lucinda's murder, Girl in Snow unfolds through deftly alternating chapters, through the eyes of many different characters . . . each of these lives paints a vivid, compelling canvas . . . Girl in Snow is not just an impressive debut but one of the best literary mysteries to come along in some time * BookPage * A bevy of young female characters have lent girlish titles to crime novels since 2012's Gone Girl. Some of these books have been memorable, some forgettable. Few have been as noteworthy as first-time novelist Danya Kukafka's elegiac and involving Girl in Snow . . . [it] is engagingly told, in fragmentary fashion, through short sections that shift in and out of sequence. Ms. Kukafka uses this technique to heighten suspense, and the book springs a number of well-timed surprises . . . the predominant tone is one of abiding sadness, in young and old alike: for people gone away forever, for loves that might have been but weren't. And then there's guilt, or the fear of guilt . . . The novel solves its major mystery in plausible fashion. But its endearing characters' struggles linger in memory after this affecting work is done * Wall Street Journal * There is a frightful truth to Danya Kukafka's characterizations, and the mystery at the heart of Girl in Snow is so elegantly constructed. It's an exceptional, unnerving debut novel. I'm already counting the days until her next one -- Owen King, author of Double Feature and co-author of Sleeping Beauties 'Girl in Snow is a haunting, lyrical novel about love, loss, and terror. Reading it felt like entering another world, where things and people - were not as they at first appeared. The world Kukafka so masterfully creates is suspenseful and electrifying; I was willing to follow her wherever she took me.' -- Anton DiSclafani, New York Times bestselling author of The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls and The After Party An exciting debut from a talented new voice. Girl in Snow is a propulsive mystery set in a suburban community marked by unsettling voyeurism. Danya Kukafka patiently reveals layers of her characters' inner lives - their ugliness and vulnerabilities - in prose that sparkles and wounds. I couldn't put this one down. -- Brit Bennett, New York Times bestselling author of The Mothers A sensational debut - great characters, mysteries within mysteries, and page-turning pace. Highly recommended -- Lee Child, bestselling author of the Jack Reacher series From its startling opening line right through to its stunning conclusion, Girl in Snow is a perfectly-paced and tautly-plotted thriller. Danya Kukafka's misfit characters are richly drawn, her prose is both elegant and eerie - this is an incredibly accomplished debut -- Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train and Into the Water