The Mountain Lion

Jean Stafford


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3 August 2023
ISBN: 9780571368174
272 pages

From the publisher

Introduced by Hilton Als, in ‘one of the best novels about adolescence in American literature’ (New York Times) two siblings come of age in a mountainous wilderness …

‘One of the strangest and angriest novels of the twentieth century.’ Lauren Groff
‘An extraordinary, savage novel.’ Olivia Laing
‘I love this novel.’ Patricia Lockwood

She would not feel safe until the beautiful animal was dead.

Ralph and Molly are inseparable siblings: united against the stupidity of daily routines, their prim mother and prissy older sisters, the world of adult authority. One summer, they are sent from their childhood home in suburban Los Angeles to their uncle’s Colorado mountain ranch, where they write, hunt, roam. But this untamed wilderness soon becomes tainted by dark stirrings of sexual desire – and as the pressures of growing up drive an irrevocable rift between them, their innocent childhoods hurtle towards a devastating end . . .

‘Beautiful, and sensitive, and quickening.’ Eileen Myles
‘A glimmer of genius.’ Rumaan Alam
‘Breathtakingly original.’ Tessa Hadley
‘A brilliant achievement [to] set beside Carson McCullers’s masterwork The Member of the Wedding.’ Joyce Carol Oates