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Release date: 19 February 2024

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People from this house go down to the sea at night, and drown.


Tinna cannot remember the last words she said to her husband. Three whole months of her memories were stolen in the crash that killed him and left her scarred and suffering from chronic pain.


Adrift and struggling to reconcile herself to this dual loss, Tinna accepts her aunt's invitation to return to her childhood home on a remote Icelandic coast. Perhaps the solitude and the sea will help her recover her memories.


But a greater grief has already taken hold here, one that has haunted the women of Tinna's family for generations. When her secretive aunt forbids Tinna from going down to the shore in the dark, she still cannot resist. Then she hears whispers on the tide offering her the answers she so desperately needs. If she can bear the price.

The Last to Drown

  • "The Last To Drown is a gorgeous love-letter to Iceland's beauty and the mystery of its folklore and environment, all wrapped up in an emotional journey of regret and self-discovery. At once elegiac and unsettling, Wilson's prose is rich with symbolism, emotional resonance, and the glimmer of possibility. A perfect novella for wrapping up warm by a fire while it rains outside, ready to be completely transported somewhere else." Nicholas Binge, Ascension

    "A powerful tale of grief, hauntings and Icelandic folklore that asks what would you do to remember the worst moment of your life." 

    Rhiannon Grist, BFS Award Winner

    "Deliciously intense and poignant beyond measure, Lorraine Wilson’s The Last To Drown is a story for those who have ever been struck by grief, for those shattering apart and hurting, for the ones who don't know what to do with a pain that pulls them under the tides of darkness and loss. With gorgeous, pellucid imagery and prose so sharp and deadly precise it feels like those jagged Icelandic rocks pressed against the jugular of a mind unprepared for the furtive disquiet, Wilson has crafted a complex and immensely human experience from words brimming with soul and astounding emotional acuity, sphinx-like and deeply insightful. The Last To Drown is a haunting for its readers; one that will find them. That will be good to them. And they will remember."

    Knicky L Abbott, Tanglewood

    "Grief, mystery and folk horror combine in equal parts to make for a fascinating page-turner of a read. I’ve often been known tosuggest that a book I’ve read would be great for TV, or film, but this one really begs to be adapted"

    Parsec, Dave Brzeski

    "Lorraine Wilson [...] again delivered a complex poetical, emotional, and intelligent tale that sweeps the reader along into another world and character trying to make sense of it. The writing is lyrical and powerful and should be savoured; a story that makes me feel this rawness and imagine being on this landscape is an immense achievement and I hope we have many more Wilson tales to look forward to. I strongly recommend this and would be surprised if this was not one of my top reads by the end of the year."

    Runalong The Shelves

    "The novella unfolds against the vivid and eerie backdrop of the Icelandic coast, where Wilson’s prose paints beautiful descriptions of the surroundings. The setting becomes a character, offering readers an atmospheric experience that deepens the emotional resonance of the narrative. The pacing is solid, as Wilson carefully builds tension and mystery, creating a compelling journey for the reader."

    Aurealis 168


    "Wilson's novel is rooted in a deep sense of place, beautifully evoking the history and magic of Scotland. A fantasy-tinged story about the hole grief makes, complicated family relationships, and the road to healing." A.C. Wise author of Wendy, Darling 


    • Winner of the SCKA for Best Novel Blurred Boundaries: Lorraine Wilson for The Way the Light Bends 

    • Nominated for the BSFA 2023 for Best Novel: Lorraine Wilson for The Way the Light Bends



    "Cinematic descriptions are intricately woven with engaging characters, intense narrative, and delicate relationships binding the past and the present.

    An incredible story about the costs of accepting everyday violence, losses of privacy, intrusions on wildlife, human trafficking, the legacy of harm, loss, and trauma. It's also a story about family, healing, forgiveness, and possibilities. It's a touching experience that just might indeed be our undoing." Yvonne Battle-Felton


    • Shortlisted for The Kavya Prize 2022

    • Winner of the SCKA Awards 2022

    • Nominated for the British Science Fiction Awards 2022

    • Shortlisted for the British Fantasy Award 2022 (Best Novel, Best Debut)

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