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Saint X  By  cover art

Saint X

By: Alexis Schaitkin
Narrated by: Alex Hyde-White, Bailey Carr, Dana Dae, Dave Fennoy, Dean Gallagher, Denise Nelson, Ella Turenne, Josh Petersdorf, Kate Orsini, Melinda Wade, Prentice Onayemi, Ron Butler, Ryan Vincent Anderson, Tristan Wright
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Publisher's summary

"Alexis Schaitkin's splashy debut novel, Saint X, is an audiobook lover's dream.... Queue this one up for a murderous, dreamy delight." (Paste)

Hailed as a "marvel of a book" and "brilliant and unflinching", Alexis Schaitkin’s stunning debut, Saint X, is a haunting portrait of grief, obsession, and the bond between two sisters never truly given the chance to know one another.

Claire is only seven years old when her college-age sister, Alison, disappears on the last night of their family vacation at a resort on the Caribbean island of Saint X. Several days later, Alison’s body is found in a remote spot on a nearby cay, and two local men - employees at the resort - are arrested. But the evidence is slim, the timeline against it, and the men are soon released. The story turns into national tabloid news, a lurid mystery that will go unsolved. For Claire and her parents, there is only the return home to broken lives.

Years later, Claire is living and working in New York City when a brief but fateful encounter brings her together with Clive Richardson, one of the men originally suspected of murdering her sister. It is a moment that sets Claire on an obsessive pursuit of the truth - not only to find out what happened the night of Alison’s death but also to answer the elusive question: Who exactly was her sister? At seven, Claire had been barely old enough to know her: A beautiful, changeable, provocative girl of 18 at a turbulent moment of identity formation.

As Claire doggedly shadows Clive, hoping to gain his trust, waiting for the slip that will reveal the truth, an unlikely attachment develops between them, two people whose lives were forever marked by the same tragedy.

For fans of Emma Cline’s The Girls and Lauren Groff’s Fates and Furies, Saint X is a flawlessly drawn and deeply moving story that culminates in an emotionally powerful ending.

Praise for Saint X:

"Here is a marvel of a book, a kaleidoscopic examination of race and privilege, family and self, told with the propulsive, kinetic focus of a crime novel. Brilliant and unflinching, Saint X marks the debut of a stunningly gifted writer. I simply couldn’t stop reading." (Chang-Rae Lee, author of On Such a Full Sea)

“Richly atmospheric, by turns coolly satiric and warmly romantic, Alexis Schaitkin’s brilliant debut novel Saint X imagines a chorus of voices in the aftermath of the alleged rape/murder of a privileged American girl vacationing in an exotic Caribbean country. Part ’true-crime’ thriller and part coming-of-age novel narrated by the deceased girl’s younger sister, Saint X is irresistibly suspenseful and canny." (Joyce Carol Oates)

©2019 Alexis Schaitkin (P)2019 Macmillan Audio

Critic reviews

"Saint X is hypnotic. Schaitkin's characters...are so intelligent and distinctive it feels not just easy, but necessary, to follow them. I devoured [it] in a day." (Oyinkan Braithwaite, New York Times Book Review)

“Richly atmospheric, by turns coolly satiric and warmly romantic, Alexis Schaitkin’s brilliant debut novel Saint X imagines a chorus of voices in the aftermath of the alleged murder of a privileged American girl vacationing in an exotic Caribbean country. Part ’true-crime’ thriller and part coming-of-age novel narrated by the deceased girl’s younger sister, Saint X is irresistibly suspenseful and canny." (Joyce Carol Oates)

"Saint X, Alexis Schaitkin’s atmospheric new novel, is ostensibly about a young American girl who goes missing while on a family vacation in the Caribbean. But it is more than that. The book also unpacks timely social and cultural issues - about grief, truth, white privilege and our murder-as-entertainment culture.” (Washington Post)

Editor's Pick

What happened to Alison?
"As the child of Caribbean immigrants, I’ve always been intrigued by the notion that my family lives in places that many people only think of as vacation destinations. The often uneasy relationship between the working-class residents and the wealthy tourists who visit the islands is at the heart of Alexis Schaitkin’s haunting debut. Eighteen years after her sister turned up dead during a family vacation on fictional Saint X, Claire Thomas runs into one of the local men accused of Alison’s murder. The multi-cast narration features not only the three central characters, but also guests at the hotel, the girl who found the body, students and teachers and ex-boyfriends who knew Alison, and even the actress who played Alison in a TV movie. Every voice rings true to unspool this mystery, with an ending no one will see coming."
Margaret H., Audible Editor