At the Edge of the Woods


Product Details

$26.00  $24.18
Two Dollar Radio
Publish Date
5.75 X 7.75 X 0.65 inches | 0.71 pounds

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About the Author

Kathryn Bromwich is a writer and commissioning editor on The Observer newspaper in London. She writes about all aspects of culture, including music, film, TV, books, art and more, and has contributed to publications including Little White Lies, Dazed, Vice, Time Out and The Independent. She has lived in Italy, Austria and the UK and is currently based in east London.


At the Edge of the Woods is an American Booksellers Association "Summer/Fall 2023 Indies Introduce Featured Title"! We are grateful to all of the amazing indie booksellers involved: click below to read the nominating booksellers' thoughts on At the Edge of the Woods:
>>> View the Indies Introduce page for At the Edge of the Woods

>>> View the full list of Summer/Fall 2023 Indies Introduce Featured Titles

"At The Edge of the Woods is an exceptional debut; uncanny, unsettling, original and subtle. Gradually, it beckons the reader deeper into both its forests and its mysteries; I was reminded at times of the work of Dolores Redondo's Baztan trilogy, and at others of Robert Seethaler's slender chronicles of remote European mountain communities."
--Robert Macfarlane, author of Mountains of the Mind, The Wild Places, The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot, Landmarks, and Underland: A Deep Time Journey

"Bromwich's prose is sedately paced, erudite, and textured in its observations of nature. Laura has a sly sense of humor and a deep distrust of humankind. As her story advances, her relationship to reality shifts and slides... At the Edge of the Woods is wise, ethereal, haunting, filled with both beauty and horror. Brief but thoughtful, lush in its descriptions, this is a novel of introspection."
--Julia Kastner, Shelf Awareness
(Read the review of At the Edge of the Woods)

"Bromwich paints Laura and her woods as vibrantly as an old-fashioned fairy tale and this is just as foreboding. Fans of highly interiorized, richly narrated feminist fiction will tear through it."
--Annie Bostrom, Booklist

"In this haunting debut, a woman running from her past tries to find solitude and independence in the woods. Bromwich's pacing works brilliantly; languid and slow as we meet Laura a few months into her time in the cabin, comfortable and familiar, before becoming increasingly disjointed and rapid to match her deteriorating mental state. The result is a slow-burning tension that never quite resolves into something like closure but is nonetheless riveting and original. A gripping, richly layered story of a woman's unraveling as she grapples with threats both past and present."
(Read the review of At the Edge of the Woods)

"Bromwich brilliantly depicts Laura's experience as only that which a woman can have... This is a book to be remembered."
--Jaylynn Korrell, Independent Book Review, starred
(Read the review of At the Edge of the Woods)

"A slow burn... portrait of a woman's communion with an untamed wilderness."
--Publishers Weekly
(Read the review of At the Edge of the Woods)

"Throughout Kathryn Bromwich's debut novel, At the Edge of the Woods, strangeness proliferates... Bromwich quickly entrances readers within her prose that wanders through a woman's solitude. She hikes everyday, running from something. It is in those trees that Bromwich situates herself as a novelist keen on exploring perceptions, sustenance, and escape into the natural world... With each new iteration of the self, the narrator throws off another layer of pretense. A novel with surprisingly linear growth, Bromwich disrupts expectations with an unhinged ending--a final stab at the festering wound of womanhood, and the woman the narrator once was."
--Corinna Akari Singer, Columbia Journal of Literary Criticism
(Read the review of At the Edge of the Woods)

"This week, host Jason Jefferies is joined by Kathryn Bromwich, who discusses her new novel At the Edge of the Woods... Topics of conversation include Richard Powers' The Overstory, wilderness narratives that captivate our imaginations, a female protagonist living off the grid, how one's mind works first thing in the morning, a mountain as a sentient being, practicing one's smile in the mirror, guilt over not attending church, and much more."
Listen to an interview with the author, presented by Explore Booksellers: Bookin' Podcast: "234--Bookin' w/ Kathryn Bromwich"

"Never have I ever come across a book that's truly as satisfying to read as this little book about a woman living in obscurity set on the outskirts of the Italian Alps. It's intriguing, mysterious, and contemplative. Not to mention that Bromwich's prose is unbelievably visceral. You will be hard pressed to find a book that satisfies like this."
--Thu Doan, East Bay Booksellers, Oakland, CA

"Laura secrets away in a spare remote cabin in an attempt to create a life of her own choosing and free herself of societal expectations. She finds comfort in nature, spending hours each day hiking farther and farther through field and forest. An exploration of how a woman disappears--figuratively and literally--after escaping an abusive, untenable situation."
--Alana Haley, Schuler's Books, Grand Rapids, MI

"A raw, intimate, richly textured and lyrical account of a self-imposed isolation in the Italian Alps. Part-almost fairy tale, part-humane examination of the body, memory, loneliness, relationships and nature--this gorgeous book offers a hypnotically meditative insight into one woman's compelling psyche."
--Lara Williams, author of The Odyssey and Supper Club

"A delicious, dark unravelling. Kathryn Bromwich's prose brings us an unnerving and tenacious voice, a remarkable protagonist. In this brilliant novel, the wild is never far away but we have more to fear from so-called civilisation. An unnerving and exhilarating book that gave me goosebumps. It made me want to take off into the forest!"
--Helen Mort, author of A Line Above the Sky

"Elegant, mysterious, unsettling--Bromwich's storytelling is as assured as it is unpredictable. A stunning achievement."
--Rhik Samadder, author of I Never Said I Loved You

"Heady and headlong, Bromwich's deliciously witchy debut unspools with the force and confidence of a spell, conjuring an indelible portrayal of one woman's quest for selfhood through solitude."
--Hermione Hoby, author of Virtue and Neon in Daylight

"I savored this wonderfully intense and enigmatic novel about a woman's retreat into the wilderness. At the Edge of the Woods touches on issues of alienation, illness, womanhood, nature and community, in sensuous prose that delights and disturbs. An offbeat, beguiling debut."
--Luiza Sauma, author of Flesh and Bone and Water

"A rich and bewitching novel. Kathryn Bromwich has spun up a delicate world that interrogates the dark side of love, the wild power of nature, and the strength it takes to break free."
--Sarah Rose Etter, author of The Book of X and Ripe

"A profound and disquieting portrait of isolation and existence at the borderlands: between cultures, past and present, civilization and wilderness. Through a delicate twining of deliberate, precise storytelling and rich, lyrical detail, Kathryn Bromwich has crafted a captivating and beguiling fable in reverse -- a story that feels like it's existed forever, just waiting for her to write it down."
--Simon Jacobs, author of Palaces and String Follow

"Mysterious, assured, and deeply, quietly passionate, At the Edge of the Woods is a magnetic debut in love with nature and language in equal measure, eschewing traditional plot and narrative devices in favor of the fabulous on every level... Bromwich infects the senses with dread and wicked insight from the first page to the last--this is a stunning experience not to be missed."
--Maryse Meijer, author of The Seventh Mansion

"At the Edge of the Woods is a rare novel: beautifully attuned to both the mysteries of the natural world and of human consciousness, at once cool and intense, suspenseful and surprising. Just when you think you know where Laura's story is headed the forest path twists, uncovering a world resplendent with ghosts, secrets, and dangerously deep wells of feeling. Kathryn Bromwich is a thrilling new talent."
--Laura van den Berg, author of I Hold a Wolf by the Ears and The Third Hotel

"Earthy, sensuous, and feminist. Through extraordinary nature writing, Bromwich addresses fertility, culture, class, illness, and community. Tense and witchy, this is a story of one woman who lives on her own terms. Glorious."
--Beth Shapiro, Skylark Bookshop (Columbia, MO)

"The writing here is incredibly striking and alluring; the prose has a cadence that is lyrical and stylistic both, flowing together with ease that sets you, the reader, into the cradled arms of this immersive, expansive tale from the very start... Bromwich interrogates isolation in both its healing and destructive capacities and cleverly treats this as a vehicle for the examination of society's view of 'othered' women, and what lengths one might go to, to remove this othering presence from their space and fall back into a false sense of security again, culminating in our narrator's rise to the status of a mythical strega, living amongst the villagers."
--Monica Robinson, author of author of Exit Wounds, EARTH IS FULL; GO BACK HOME, and peeling the yellow wallpaper, via Goodreads

"This book is an incredible vibe. It's a little bit of Shirley Jackson, a little bit of Virginia Woolf, a little bit of Ottessa Moshfegh and yes, perhaps some Richard Powers for the nature writing and communication with plants bits. I too would like to go live in a remote woods cabin in rural Italy. Very atmospheric and strange."
--Anton Bogomazov, Politics & Prose (Washington, DC)

"If you are looking for a book where the writing is the star, look no further than At the Edge of the Woods. Exquisite prose begs to be savored, even as the story pulls the reader along. Stunning work."
--Mary O'Malley, Skylark Bookshop (Columbia, MO)

"Out of necessity, Laura has chosen to live a simpler, yet, courageous life in a secluded, rustic cabin in the woods on the outskirts of an Italian village. Necessity turns into a reorganization of priorities, which I wholly admire, as Laura shares her thoughts with the reader on living with nature, interacting with others, and what it means to survive. Beautiful."
--Jill Naylor, Novel. (Memphis, TN)

"Intense and hazy, At the Edge of the Woods is a feverishly captivating combination of nature writing and character study. As Laura becomes increasingly connected to the woods around her, the reader can't help but to be drawn into her orbit, to see things the way that she does."
--Mallory Melton, BookPeople (Austin, TX)

"Elaborate details of the woods, and the quiet, overwhelming powers that both it and being a woman in a patriarchal social structures holds. Bromwich's At the Edge of the Woods fits well in a stack with Ottessa Moshfegh's Death in Her Hands, but it is also a beautiful, fresh addition to the feminist literary canon."
--Tay Jones, White Whale Bookstore (Pittsburgh, PA)

"An engrossing tale that exposes how easily solitude can become isolation and the dangers therein, how the things we need can often be our ruin. A kissing cousin of Margaret Atwood's Surfacing, Bromwich's debut is confident, atmospheric, and mesmerizing."
--Wesley Minter, Third Place Books (Seattle, WA)

"At the Edge of the Woods is a historical yet topical novel about a woman existing outside of society's expectations. Laura escapes her miserable marriage to reestablish herself in an isolated cabin in the mountains of Italy, her home country. Immersed in nature, she simplifies her routine--hiking, foraging, reading for hours. Only during occasional trips into town does she notice the villagers' disdain. Amid lyrical prose and ever-building tension, Laura distances herself from conventional reality, but she may be all the wiser for it."
--Mary Wahlmeier, Raven Book Store (Lawrence, KS)

"At the Edge of the Woods is a haunting debut, full of the wonder of nature, the confidence to choose one's path, and the uncertainty of what comes next. Bromwich builds the tension perfectly in this story..."
--Beth Seufer-Buss, Bookmarks (Winston-Salem, NC)

"Following one woman's self-imposed isolation in the Italian Alps, At the Edge of the Woods delves into the complexities of womanhood, community, nature, and more. Kathryn Bromwich expertly threads her story with tension and relief, slowly revealing the truth of the protagonist to the reader."
--Laura Graveline, Brazos Bookstore (Houston, TX)

"Bromwich has crafted a lovely, quiet, and haunting tale of a woman who escapes a luxurious but miserable life to live alone in a tiny cottage outside a small village. Laura becomes a creature of the forest, but depends on the village for small jobs to buy necessities. She needs the villagers' trust to get and retain work and be safe in her isolation. Can Laura throw off her once-lofty status to become a member of a tiny, rough-edged community?"
--Kay Wosewick, Boswell Books (Milwaukee, WI)

"A woman trying to make a fresh start winds up in the Italian Alps, where she tutors children and climbs mountains--until someone from her past shows up at her door."
--David Varno, Publishers Weekly, "Spring 2023 Announcements: Literary Fiction"

Kathryn Bromwich is a writer and commissioning editor on The Observer newspaper in London. She writes about all aspects of culture, including music, film, TV, books, art and more, and has contributed to publications including Little White Lies, Dazed, Vice, Time Out and The Independent. She has lived in Italy, Austria and the UK and is currently based in east London.