Salt Grows Heavy

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Salt Grows Heavy (2023, Doherty Associates, LLC, Tom)

English language

Published Nov. 18, 2023 by Doherty Associates, LLC, Tom.

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4 stars (3 reviews)

3 editions

A beautiful and horrific love story

5 stars

I loved this and I needed to sit with it a while after I finished, before starting my next book. It's a body-horror/fairytale/love story between a 'mermaid' on land and her (plague) doctor, as they intervene in a morbid cult run by three false saints. It's like nothing I've read before (okay, maybe it's a bit T. Kingfisher-y - a good thing) and it's really beautifully written.

The Salt Grows Heavy

4 stars

I quite enjoyed this dark fairy tale / body horror novella about the relationship between a mermaid and a plague doctor, as they investigate mysterious violent children in the woods in the thrall of three surgeon saints. I enjoyed the prose quite a bit, but I am also a sucker for stories about monsters and bodies, broken and (re)constructed.

(Also seriously though, I will content warn for on page violence, death, and gore. Various characters are eviscerated several times on page.)

The ebook that I read also included the short story "And In Our Daughters, We Find a Voice", which can be read here:

It's possible that I'm slow on the uptake, and so I didn't twig to the fact that the mermaid in The Salt Grows Heavy having her tongue cut out (losing her voice, in other words) was a riff on the little mermaid story. This short …

avatar for JustGrist

rated it

4 stars