From a writer praised by Junot Díaz as 'the fire, in my opinion, and the light', Alexander Chee's mesmerizing novel The Queen of the Night follows one woman's rise from circus rider to courtesan to world-renowned star.
A 'wild opera of a novel', The Queen of the Night tells the story of Lilliet Berne, an orphan who leaves the American frontier for Europe and is swept into the glamour and terror of Second Empire France. She becomes a sensation of the Paris Opera, with every accolade but an original role - her chance at immortality. When one is offered to her, she finds the part is based on her deepest secret, something only four people have ever known. But who has betrayed her?
With 'epic sweep, gorgeous language, and haunting details', Alexander Chee shares Lilliet's cunning transformation from circus rider to courtesan to legendary soprano, retracing the path that led to the role that could secure her reputation - or destroy her with the secrets it reveals.
'One doesn't so much read The Queen of the Night as one is bewitched by it' Hanya Yanagihara, author of the Man Booker shortlisted A Little Life
'A wild opera of a novel and the perfect summer read: swift, smart, immersive and gorgeous' Guardian
'A celebration . . . of creativity, ingenuity, endurance, mastery and grace'New York Times
'A more impressive, richly imagined novel I have not read in many years. From its heroine's first entrance, The Queen of the Night grabbed me and kept me rapt as it writhed and contorted its way through love and murder, courtesans and empresses, fates and curses' Financial Times
'A masterfully written book. Chee, just, is masterful. I loved this novel' Roxane Gay
'An epic novel, brilliantly extravagant' Vogue
A bestseller in the US, a New York Times Editor's Choice, a Guardian Best Book of the Summer and a Best Book of the Year So Far from Esquire, Refinery 29, and Financial Times