In ‘Open Water,’ Maria Flook explores the charged and eerie shoreline of Newport, Rhode Island where Willis Pratt squanders his days running small cons. Willis has come home to care for his dying stepmom but he quickly gets hooked on her prescription morphine. Soon, he meets his pretty neighbor Holly, who was charged with arson for setting fire to her ex-husband’s bed. These two become entwined in a black comedy of seaside life, in acts of heroism and vandalism that erupt across the pages in a “wild joy ride of a story, a tale that hurtles through realism into allegory.” (New York Times).
“Flook’s vivid and exhilarating writing puts her in the front ranks of new American writers.”
“A strange, original, and fully absorbing novel. The characters in Open Water are rendered with such compassion and psychological acuity that they come alive.”
—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times.
“It’s as if Martin Amis has been reborn as Anne Tyler. . The novel delights us with touching, deeply felt comedy.”
—Dan Cryer, News York Newsday