At a time when nothing seems real, it takes something truly unusual to put your life into focus.
When her beloved husband Jackson disappeared without a trace, popular novelist Sia Dane stopped writing, closed down her house, stuffed her heart into a cage, and started floating. It wasn’t the normal response to heartache, but Sia rarely did things the normal way.
Exactly one year, one month, and six days after Jackson’s disappearance, Sia discovers a mysterious man on the beach. He’s mute, unresponsive, and looks as if he has just walked out of the sea. It’s the sort of situation Jackson would have solved with a simple call to the police. But Jackson is gone.
As unreal as he seems, Sia is determined to help this man. Perhaps she can return him to his place in the world—to whoever lost him and loves him. Perhaps she can answer their questions the way no one could answer hers.
But as her friends and family help her winnow her way to the truth, Sia comes to realize that the unfathomable leap between sorrow and healing begins with a single step.
About the Author
Kristin Bair O’Keeffe is the author of the novels The Art of Floating and Thirsty, as well as numerous essays about China, bears, and off-the-plot expats. She lives in Andover, Massachusetts, with her husband and daughter and travels to anywhere as often as she can.
“Blending radiant language and a dreamlike journey through sorrow and healing, this is one to recommend to fans of Sarah Addison Allen and Eowyn Ivey.”—Booklist
“…the core plot of The Art of Floating is touching and delivers quite an emotional punch.”—RT Book Reviews
“With a touch as light as air, Bair O’Keeffe delivers a powerful punch. The Art of Floating is an emotional, sensitive novel about what causes pain and what defines loss, where “what really happened” floats somewhere between the realms of the real and the impossible. Sweet as a summer breeze, aching as a frozen sea, this story drifts through quirky wordplay, the small town drama of coastal New England, and the lure of detachment from one’s own mind, without losing its tether. One man is lost, one man is found—how on earth, or underwater, or in the air, did this come to be?”—Lydia Netzer, bestselling author of Shine, Shine, Shine
"A triumph. A treasure. Tender, profound, and hilariously heartbreaking. A gorgeously magical story that will have you saying "my favorite!" and then sharing it with everyone you know."—Hank Phillippi Ryan (Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, and Mary Higgins Clark award winning author)