What Red Was
A startling and sophisticated novel of modern love, sexual violence, and toxic inheritance from a brilliant new voice
One of Stylist's best books to read in the post-#MeToo era
"One of the best books I've ever read about female rage and transgression...An assured and stealthily brilliant debut that people will be talking about for a long time." --Lisa Gabriele, author of The Winters
When Kate Quaile meets Max Rippon in the first week of university, so begins a life-changing friendship. Over the next four years, the two become inseparable. For him, she breaks her solitude; for her, he leaves his busy circles behind. But knowing Max means knowing his family: the wealthy Rippons, all generosity, social ease, and quiet repression. Theirs is a very different world from Kate's own upbringing, and yet she soon finds herself drawn into their gilded lives and the secrets that lie beneath. Until one evening, at a summer party at the Rippon's home just after graduation, her life is shattered in a bedroom while the music plays on downstairs.
What Red Was is an incisive and mesmerizing novel about power, privilege, and consent - one that fearlessly examines the effects of trauma on the mind and body of a young woman, the tyrannies of memory, the sacrifices involved in staying silent, and the courage in speaking out. And when Kate does, it raises this urgent question: Whose story is it now?
Publication Date: 09-May-2019
Publisher: Penguin Random House