Kaaron is an award-winning Australian writer of short fiction, and her stories have appeared in many magazines and anthologies, including the British Fantasy Award-winning The Alsiso Project, and the recent Poe and Haunted Legends collections. Other short fiction awards include the Ditmar Award (twice) and the Aurealis Award.
Warren's debut is a promising launch for HarperCollins's new Angry Robot imprint. Eighteen-year-old Stephanie "Stevie" Searle is more the center of consciousness than the protagonist, narrating as people and moments swirl around her. After a car crash kills her mother and leaves Stevie alone in the family home, the book primarily catalogues the memories that arise as she digs in the backyard, intending to plant jasmine, a smell she associates with dead bodies. Minutely detailed events and conversations are progressively undercut with singsong variations of "This is what should have happened.... This is what did happen." In the sickening blur of Stevie's narrative, what "really" happens is both uncertain and obvious; the details she commands so confidently are infinitely mutable, but the gruesome consequences slowly become apparent. With outstanding control, Warren manipulates Stevie's voice to create a portrait of horror that in no way reads like a first novel. (Oct.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
"With outstanding control, Warren manipulates Stevie's voice to create a portrait of horror that in no way reads like a first novel." - Publishers Weekly (Starred) Pick of the Week "Kaaron Warren is a fresh, amazingly talented voice out of Australia. You *must* read her work." - Ellen Datlow "Hugely and genuinely disturbing" - SciFi Now "Simply gut-wrenching" - Jon Courtenay Grimwood, SFX "Powerful stuff. So powerful, in fact, that my throat was hurting with my attempts to keep my emotions under control. I was completely drawn in, totally immersed. I felt ill much of the time." - Russell Kirkpatrick, bestselling author of "Across the Face of the World"