Notes on an Execution

A Novel

by Danya Kukafka

On Sale: 01/25/2022

Notes on an Execution

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Notes on an Execution

A Novel

by Danya Kukafka

On Sale: 01/25/2022

Format:

About the Book

"A searing portrait of the complicated women caught in the orbit of a serial killer. . . . Compassionate and thought-provoking." –BRIT BENNETT, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Half

“A profound and staggering experience of empathy that challenges us to confront what it means to be human in our darkest moments. . . . I relished every page of this brilliant and gripping masterpiece."—ASHLEY AUDRAIN, New York Times bestselling author of The Push

In the tradition of Long Bright River and The Mars Room, a gripping and atmospheric work of literary suspense that deconstructs the story of a serial killer on death row, told primarily through the eyes of the women in his life—from the bestselling author of Girl in Snow.

Ansel Packer is scheduled to die in twelve hours. He knows what he’s done, and now awaits execution, the same chilling fate he forced on those girls, years ago. But Ansel doesn’t want to die; he wants to be celebrated, understood. 

Through a kaleidoscope of women—a mother, a sister, a homicide detective—we learn the story of Ansel’s life. We meet his mother, Lavender, a seventeen-year-old girl pushed to desperation; Hazel, twin sister to Ansel’s wife, inseparable since birth, forced to watch helplessly as her sister’s relationship threatens to devour them all; and finally, Saffy, the detective hot on his trail, who has devoted herself to bringing bad men to justice but struggles to see her own life clearly. As the clock ticks down, these three women sift through the choices that culminate in tragedy, exploring the rippling fissures that such destruction inevitably leaves in its wake. 

Blending breathtaking suspense with astonishing empathy, Notes on an Execution presents a chilling portrait of womanhood as it simultaneously unravels the familiar narrative of the American serial killer, interrogating our system of justice and our cultural obsession with crime stories, asking readers to consider the false promise of looking for meaning in the psyches of violent men.

"Provocative, intelligent, thrilling, moving."—PAULA HAWKINS, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Girl on the Train

"Spellbinding and beautifully written . . .an irresistible, unbearably tense thriller; a poignant, deeply compassionate tale of resilience; and a vital intervention in the way we talk about violent crime." —MEGAN ABBOTT, New York Times bestselling author of The Turnout

Educator and Librarian Resources

Critical Praise

“At once blistering with righteous anger and radical empathy, Notes on an Execution is destined to become a contemporary classic.” - Esquire, The Most Anticipated Books of Winter 2022

"A searing portrait of the complicated women caught in the orbit of a serial killer. Notes on an Execution examines a culture that romanticizes men who kill while also exploring the lives of the overlooked women altered by this violence. Compassionate and thought-provoking." - Brit Bennett, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Half

"Provocative, intelligent, thrilling, moving." - Paula Hawkins, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Girl on the Train

"Spellbinding and beautifully written. Danya Kukafka’s Notes on an Execution is an irresistible, unbearably tense thriller; a poignant, deeply compassionate tale of resilience; and a vital intervention in the way we talk about violent crime, its endless reverberations and foremost its survivors." - Megan Abbott, New York Times bestselling author of The Turnout

"Reading Danya Kukafka’s Notes on an Execution is a profound and staggering experience of empathy that challenges us to confront what it means to be human in our darkest moments. The stories of these richly drawn characters are layered like nesting dolls, each one revealing more about how we love and how we survive. Kukafka’s prose, alive and poetic, is unforgettable. I relished every page of this brilliant and gripping masterpiece." - Ashley Audrain, New York Times bestselling author of The Push

Notes on an Execution is seriously important crime fiction that trains the lens on a serial killer's victims rather than on the criminal himself and shows how the legacy of violence endures for decades, leaving a tidal wave of collateral damage in its wake. Kukakfa's story is unflinching and unromantic yet wrenching and devastating in equal measure. Never falling into the easy trap of sensationalism, Notes on an Execution pushes women to the forefront of a narrative that has too often overlooked them and all they suffer.” - Ivy Pochoda, award-winning author of These Women and Wonder Valley

“In Notes on an Execution, Danya Kukafka gives us something wrenchingly original, a rare and unsettling reading experience that challenges us to peel back what we believe about the criminal justice system, good and evil, and what human beings are capable of, both in darkness and in light. A moving tour de force of empathy and insight. I loved this book.”
- Paula McLain, New York Times bestselling author of When the Stars Go Dark and The Paris Wife

"Puts the reader in the shoes of serial killer . . . to strip some mystique from the serial-killer mythology." - Rolling Stone

“An empathetic and gripping story about a serial killer on death row primarily told from the perspectives of the women in his life as the clock ticks to his execution.” - USA Today, 20 Winter Books We Can't Wait to Read

"This beautifully written book does overtime as a suspense-driven mediation on the true crime industry.” - Marie Claire, The Most Eagerly Anticipated Fiction by Women in 2022

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Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780063236295
  • ISBN 10: 006323629X
  • Imprint: William Morrow
  • On Sale: 01/25/2022
  • Pages: 320
  • List Price:23.99 CAD
  • BISAC1 : FICTION / Contemporary Women
  • BISAC2 : FICTION / Crime
  • BISAC3 : FICTION / Psychological

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