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Catalog Archive / Spring 2020


Half is a bright and inventive novel like no other. I was swept away, mesmerized, pulled into the conspiracy that is twindom, with its exquisite sweetness and cruelty. The mystery that propels the story forward artfully reflects the mystery of twindom itself.”
—Bonnie Jo Campbell, author of American Salvage

Growing up, identical twins Paula and Artis speak in one voice—until they can't. After years apart, with lives, partners, and children of their own, they are reunited on the occasion of their father's funeral. Seeking to repair the damage wrought upon their relationship by outside forces, the twins retrace their early lives to uncover what happened—but risk unraveling their carefully constructed cocoons.

Written in spare, lyrical prose, Half is an achingly beautiful story of intimacy and loss, revealing the complexity—and cost—of sharing your life entirely with someone else. Sharon Harrigan deftly explores how fierce love can also be the very thing that leads to heartbreak and betrayal.


Author photo of Sharon Harrigan. Sharon Harrigan teaches at WriterHouse, a nonprofit literary center in Charlottesville, Virginia. She is the author of Playing with Dynamite: A Memoir. Her work has appeared in the New York Times (Modern Love), Narrative, Virginia Quarterly Review, and elsewhere.



“I loved this novel. I couldn't put it down. In its (nearly) collective narration by sisters, Half reminds me of Jeffrey Eugenides's The Virgin Suicides, but the story is dazzling, startling, and fresh. Half proves irresistible page after lyrical page.”
—Jesse Lee Kercheval, author of Underground Women

“Innovative and inventive, this novel does the impossible. It makes us believe two people can be so close they are virtually the same person. Harrigan's magic trick is so convincing that when the twins lose their bond, we feel ourselves broken in half too.”
—Bret Anthony Johnston, author of Remember Me Like This

“At turns remarkably lovely and frighteningly odd, Half is as sweet as it is creepy and strange. The story is told from the plural perspective of twins, reminiscent of Justin Torres's We the Animals, with tension so organically built in that the very nature of the story, the style in which it's told, lends itself to a troubling dynamic, like the twins themselves. Twice the threat at every turn, Half is lyrical, imaginative, and smart. A little novel pulling off a very big feat.”
—Deborah Reed, author of Things We Set on Fire

“Fans of Jeffrey Eugenides, Andre Dubus III, and Jane Smiley will adore Harrigan’s suspenseful, lyrical, and consuming exploration of two difficult lives, intertwined. The adjective ‘haunting’ can be overused to describe dynamic and poignant literary fiction, but it couldn’t be more fitting here. Raw and powerful, Half will stay with you.”
Booklist, Starred Review

“Harrigan’s bold stylistic choices and memorable voice lend the novel a sense of mystery and magic. . . . Riveting and inventive, this is a cut above the average coming-of-age tale.”
Publishers Weekly

“Gripping. . . . Harrigan’s novel will leave you eagerly turning pages to discover what happens next.”
Foreword Reviews

“Harrigan raises thought-provoking questions in this novel about codependency, narcissism, and both mental and physical illness. Her deft prose and searing imagination render these characters and their behavior credible. A riveting, inventive, quietly disconcerting page-turner.”
New York Journal of Books

“Approaches, in stunning sparsity, the traditionally taboo subject of child abuse as it hinders—and aids—the blossoming adolescence of Artis and Paula, twins. . . . No small feat. . . . Half is a novel of exploring grief, of overcoming the distance between what is imagined and what is real.”
American Book Review

“An aching and beautiful novel that probes the blurred space between siblings and expands upon the consciousness that emerges from shared jokes, shared memories, and shared pain. . . . Harrigan’s writing is confident and spare, unafraid of bold assertions.”

“Wildly creative in conception and engaging in execution.”
Seattle Book Review

“Harrigan deftly complicates the easy binaries of good and evil, love and hate, innocence and guilt, engagement and estrangement. . . . With deceptively spare prose that conceals complex ideas about identity, Harrigan's novel explores the fractions of ourselves we share with others in order to build our whole selves.”
The Rupture



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Half: cover art of a close up photo of two women, their faces pressed together. The image is cut so that only one half of each face is visible. Where the faces meet, the title, Half, is written sideways, in large, white font, contrasting from the orange hue of the picture.

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JUNE 2020
LC: 2019050460 PS
280 pp. 5.5 x 8.5

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Paper $17.95
ISBN 978-0-299-32854-2
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