The Drowned Woman
Jeanette, a graduate student on scholarship and majoring in art history, arrives on the West Coast intending to be embraced by endless sunshine. She finds comfort in her studies and in her new apartment, drinking cheap Scotch and enjoying casual hookups.
From her youth slowly emerges a many-veiled seductive dance that begins in the carnal and veers toward the reluctantly domestic, before ultimately descending, as they do, into the maternal. Fueled by anger alone, Jeanette plies her own orbit, determined to reclaim her life.
With nods to the psychoanalytic works of Louise Bourgeois, The Drowned Woman explores the collision of the tender and the violent, and the brand of survival instincts unique to women artists.
"The Drowned Woman is a powerful and tender exploration of a woman trapped in a life she did not choose—but also incidentally did. Abigail Stewart’s astute and wry novel incisively explores the ways a woman, and an artist, is always becoming. And how she might defy expectation and forge her own way."
– Natalie Bakopoulos, author of Scorpionfish
“The Drowned Woman has the gothic stylings of Barbara Comyns and the emotional register of a black-and-white film, fresh yet remarkably vintage. A stoic, dazzling debut."
– Tucker Leighty-Phillips, Hayden's Ferry Review