- ISBN 978-1-4721-5466-8
- 368 pages
For years, rumours of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. She's barefoot and wild; unfit for polite society. So in late 1968, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark.But Kya is not what they say.
Abandoned at age ten, she has survived on her own in the marsh that she calls home. A born naturalist with just one day of school, she takes life lessons from the land, learning from the false signals of fireflies the real way of this world. But while she could have lived in solitude forever, the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. Drawn to two young men from town, who are each intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new and startling world--until the unthinkable happens.
In Where the Crawdads Sing, Owens juxtaposes an exquisite ode to the natural world against a heartbreaking coming of age story and a surprising murder investigation. Thought-provoking, wise, and deeply moving, Owens's debut novel reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.
Where the Crawdads Sing is a 2018 novel by American author Delia Owens. The story follows two timelines that slowly intertwine. The first timeline describes the life and adventures of a young girl named Kya as she grows up isolated in the marsh of North Carolina between 1952 and 1969. The second timeline follows an investigation into the apparent murder of Chase Andrews, a local celebrity of Barkley Cove, a fictional coastal town of North Carolina.
By January 2022, the book had sold 12 million copies, making it one of the best-selling books of all time.
A fascinating read on the edge of crime fiction. Kya Clark, the Marsh girl, is abandoned first by her mother, siblings, and eventually her father, and grows up alone in the North Carolina Marshes from the age of 8. She receives help from a local boy and a trader. Thrown back mainly on her own resources she becomes an acute observer of the wildlife around her and eventually becomes an author and a biologist of note, even though she spends only one day of her life at school.
Locals do not trust her and have little to do with her, but eventually one of the local boys who has befriended her is killed and she is brought to trial for his murder. A local lawyer defends her pro-bono.
So the first part of this book is about Kya growing up, and the second part is about the trial.
My rating: 4.6
About the author
Delia Owens (born ca. 1949) is an American author and zoologist. Her debut novel Where the Crawdads Sing topped The New York Times Fiction Best Sellers of 2019 and The New York Times Fiction Best Sellers of 2020 for 32 non-consecutive weeks and was on the list for 135 weeks in total. She has also written the memoirs Cry of the Kalahari, The Eye of the Elephant, and Secrets of the Savanna, with her then-husband, Mark, about their time studying animals in Africa