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Luckenbooth

Published by Pegasus Crime
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

A bold, haunting, and startlingly unique novel about the secrets we leave behind and the places that hold them long after we are gone, a “quintessential novel of Edinburgh at its darkest.” (Irvine Welsh)

There are stories tucked away on every floor of 10 Luckenbooth Close

1910, Edinburgh. Jessie MacRae has been sent to a tenement building by her recently deceased father to bear a child for a wealthy man and his fiancée. The harrowing events that follow lead to a curse on the building and its residents—a curse that will last for the rest of the century.

Over nine decades, 10 Luckenbooth Close bears witness to emblems of a changing world outside its walls. An infamous madam, a spy, a famous Beat poet, a coal miner who fears daylight, a psychic: these are some of the residents whose lives are plagued by the building's troubled history in disparate, sometimes chilling ways. The curse creeps up the nine floors as an enraged spirit world swells to the surface, desperate for the true horror of the building's longest kept secret to be heard.

Luckenbooth is a bold, haunting, and dazzlingly unique novel about the stories and secrets we leave behind—and the places that hold them long after we are gone.

About The Author

Jenni Fagan is an award-winning novelist, poet, screenwriter, and playwright. She is the author of two prior novels, The Panopticon and The Sunlight Pilgrims, as well as a collection of poetry, The Dead Queen of Bohemia. In 2013 Jenni was the only Scottish writer to be on Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists list. She lives in Edinburgh

Product Details

  • Publisher: Pegasus Crime (January 4, 2022)
  • Length: 352 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781643138886

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Raves and Reviews

Praise for Jenni Fagan’s The Panopticon:

Shortlisted for The Desmond Elliott Award; Shortlisted for The James Tait Black Prize; Shortlisted for the Dundee International Book Prize

“Fagan has created a feisty, brass-knuckled yet deeply vulnerable heroine, who feels like sort of a cross between Lisbeth Salander and one of Irvine Welsh’s drug-taking Scottish miscreants. Her novel is by turns gritty, unnerving, exhausting, [and] ferocious. A deeply felt and genuinely affecting novel.”

– Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

“Fagan has given us one of the most spirited heroines to cuss, kiss, bite and generally break the nose of the English novel in many a moon. Her prose beats behind your eyelids, the flow of images widening to a glittering delta. Vive Jenni Fagan, whose next book just moved into my ‘eagerly anticipated’ pile.”

– Tom Shone, The New York Times Book Review (front cover review)

“She writes about these young people with a deep sympathy for their violently disordered lives and an equally deep appreciation of their humor and resiliency. Fagan has a rousing voice, with its roundly rendered Scottish accent.”

– Ron Charles, The Washington Post

"A classic coming-of-age tale.”

– The Boston Globe

“Fagan’s style calls to mind fellow Scottish writer Anthony Burgess, whose novel A Clockwork Orange used similar lexicographic liberties to reinforce a theme of teenage dystopia” 

– The Daily Beast

“[A] terrific portrait of a young criminal. Fagan makes this ugly life somehow beautiful.”

– Alan Cheuse, NPR

"The Panopticon is an exquisite first novel. Jenni Fagan has created a dark, disturbing, yet ultimately hopeful portrait of a young woman growing up alone. To say it is haunting is an understatement."

– Vanessa Diffenbaugh, New York Times bestselling author of The Language of Flowers

"Jenni Fagan has created a high-resolution portrait of a throwaway kid.This is a contemporary tragedy of the highest order." 

– Carol Anshaw, New York Times bestselling author of Carry the One

“In the Margaret Atwood/The Handmaid’s Tale vein—very literary and suspenseful. I like books set in an altered reality—one that feels familiar and yet also deeply unfamiliar, that embodies some of the dailiness of life, and yet slowly reveals itself to be a very different, much more sinister place.”

– Gillian Flynn, Oprah.com

"Best debut novel I've read this year.”

– Irvine Welsh

“Told in Anais’ raw voice, Fagan’s novel peers into the world inhabited by forgotten children, and, in Anais, gives us a heartbreakingly intelligent and sensitive heroine wrapped in an impossibly impenetrable exterior. Readers won’t be able to tear themselves away from this transcendent debut.” 

– Booklist (starred review)

"Anais's ongoing internal dialog, her periodic reimagining of her life and situation, is enthralling. James Kelman's How Late It Was, How Late meets Ken Kesey's One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest. Not to be missed." 

– Library Journal (starred review)

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