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The Quelling - DIGITAL

12.00
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The Quelling - DIGITAL

12.00

“Complex and strange, The Quelling is a marvel of a debut. With an eye toward the Victorian madhouse and an American Gothicism reminiscent of Shirley Jackson, Barrow paints the sisters Dorian and Addie with tenderness and keen psychological intuition. Their voices, like the animal documentaries that play constantly in the background of their lives, remark frankly on the brutality of their experiences and yet capture an unfailing sense of wonder.”

—Jen Julian, author of Earthly Delights and Other Apocalypses, winner of Press 53's 2018 Short Fiction Prize

Addie and Dorian have always been together: the two sisters have spent most of their lives in a locked ward after being diagnosed with a rare psychiatric condition and accused of murder as children. Now on the cusp of adulthood, Addie plans to start a new family to replace the one she lost, while Dorian struggles with her own violent tendencies to help raise her sister's child. But Dr. Lark, the supervisor of their ward, sees these patients as the key to his revolutionary Cure. As his "treatments" become increasingly bizarre, Addie and Dorian are increasingly unsafe, and a ward nurse may be their only lifeline.

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“Complex and strange, The Quelling is a marvel of a debut. With an eye toward the Victorian madhouse and an American Gothicism reminiscent of Shirley Jackson, Barrow paints the sisters Dorian and Addie with tenderness and keen psychological intuition. Their voices, like the animal documentaries that play constantly in the background of their lives, remark frankly on the brutality of their experiences and yet capture an unfailing sense of wonder.”

—Jen Julian, author of Earthly Delights and Other Apocalypses, winner of Press 53's 2018 Short Fiction Prize

Addie and Dorian have always been together: the two sisters have spent most of their lives in a locked ward after being diagnosed with a rare psychiatric condition and accused of murder as children. Now on the cusp of adulthood, Addie plans to start a new family to replace the one she lost, while Dorian struggles with her own violent tendencies to help raise her sister's child. But Dr. Lark, the supervisor of their ward, sees these patients as the key to his revolutionary Cure. As his "treatments" become increasingly bizarre, Addie and Dorian are increasingly unsafe, and a ward nurse may be their only lifeline.


The Quelling—ferocious, tender, astonishing—lays bare our animalistic drives toward violence and love, and our human impulse to cure and to control. Barbara Barrow's story of the sharp sisters Addie and Dorian, and the strange and transgressive Dr. Lark, brims with terrifying insights and the eerie intimacy of dreams.”

—Anca L. Szilágyi, author of Daughters of the Air

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Barbara Barrow is a fiction writer and literary critic who adores all things feminist, fabulist, and surreal. Her short fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in The Forge Literary Magazine, Cease, Cows, Folio, Zahir, Nano Fiction, and elsewhere, and her journal articles have appeared in Victorian Poetry, Journal of Victorian Culture, Victorian Periodicals Review, and Nineteenth-Century Contexts. She is Assistant Professor of English at Point Park University in Pittsburgh. Follow her online at barbarabarrow.com or on Twitter and Facebook.