MY DARK VANESSA by Kate Elizabeth Russell – Spotlight & Giveaway



MY DARK VANESSA (WilliamMorrow) by Kate Elizabeth Russell is one of the most highly anticipated and controversial novels of 2020 – and it’s arrived! Oprah originally picked it for her book club, but after uproar on the Internet, she changed her mind and dropped it.

MY DARK VANESSA explores the psychological dynamics of the relationship between a precocious yet naïve teenage girl and her magnetic and manipulative teacher, a brilliant, all-consuming read that marks the explosive debut of an extraordinary new writer.

2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenager-and who professed to worship only her-may be far different from what she has always believed?

Alternating between Vanessa’s present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood.



I’m a writer living in Madison, Wisconsin. My debut novel, My Dark Vanessa, is forthcoming from William Morrow (US), 4th Estate (UK), and will be translated into over twenty languages.

Originally from eastern Maine, I earned an MFA from Indiana University and a PhD from the University of Kansas.

you can find me on twitter @GinnyMcCoo
and on instagram @kateelizabethrussell


Thanks to William Morrow/Harper Collins we have one signed copy to giveaway. Just tell us about the darkest book you’re read recently. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.

GIVEAWAY: USA only please

#WilliamMorrowPublishing #MyDarkVanessa #KateElizabethRussell

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33 thoughts on “MY DARK VANESSA by Kate Elizabeth Russell – Spotlight & Giveaway

  1. Oh how I would LOVE to win this one! The darkest book I’ve recently read was The Whisper Man but that wasn’t really dark. I haven’t read a really dark book lately and hoping that changes soon! Fingers crossed!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh how I would LOVE to win this one! The darkest I’ve read lately is the Whisper Man but that wasn’t really dark. I haven’t read any really dark books lately but I’m hoping that will change soon! Fingers crossed!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. AHHHHHHHHH! I want this one so badly. Let’s see the darkest book I’ve read recently… Lock Every Door by Riley Sager. So dark.


  4. Oooooh, I can NOT wait to read this one! The darkest book I’ve read lately is Call Me Evie.

    Fingers crossed! Thank you!


  5. SOME CHOOSE DARKNESS by Charlie Donlea. An exceptionally well crafted story filled with suspense, intrigue, chilling and twisted plots. The truth is easy to miss, even when it’s right in front of you and some choose darkness, others are chosen by it are lines that stood out to me. This is one of the best psychological mysteries I’ve ever read.


  6. I just finished You Let Me In by Camilla Bruce. It was dark, disturbing and strangely beautiful all at the same time.


  7. The darkest book I have ever read is The Ritual by Adam Nevill. Some of my friends couldn’t even read it, but I enjoyed it, lol!


  8. It’s been so long since I’ve read a really dark book. I would say Intensity by Dean Koontz. It was SO good!


  9. Hi, this book sounds very intriguing and like a very good page turner! I would say the darkest book I have read recently is The Patient, it is such a good book with lots of twists and turns. Thank you so much for the chance. Thank you for sharing about this book.


  10. The darkest book I have ever read is “One Among Us” by Paige Dearth. It follows a young girl who is kidnapped and put into sex trafficking, and very horribly abused. It was a very tough one to read.


  11. I don’t know if this is what you consider dark but I just finished an ARC of The New Husband and… whoa 😱😱😱


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