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Cover for The Reservoir Tapes

The Reservoir Tapes

Jon Mcgregor


List Price: 22.00*
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Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (8/6/2018)
Paperback (7/16/2019)
Compact Disc (8/7/2018)
MP3 CD (8/7/2018)
Compact Disc (8/7/2018)

August 2018 Indie Next List

The Reservoir Tapes chronicles the disappearance of a young girl in a small English village, with each chapter written from the perspective of a different resident. It’s not an easy writing feat, but Jon McGregor is able to instill a unique narrative clarity for every single character, weaving the young girl’s disappearance with the distinctive stories of each villager. More than a missing persons story, The Reservoir Tapes is about the very universal and human struggle to find meaning and the sacrifices we have to make to feel safe, loved, and truly at home. If you haven’t read anything by Jon McGregor before, make sure not to miss his latest novel!”
— Morgan McComb, Raven Book Store, Lawrence, KS
View the List


“A companion piece to his Man Booker–longlisted Reservoir 13, McGregor’s latest works perfectly well as a standalone, offering an alternately sweet and suspenseful depiction of a community as it reacts, person by person, to the disappearance of a teenage girl.” —Entertainment Weekly

A teenage girl has gone missing. The whole community has been called upon to join the search. And now an interviewer arrives, intent on capturing the community’s unstable stories about life in the weeks and months before Becky Shaw vanished.

Each villager has a memory to share or a secret to conceal, a connection to Becky that they are trying to make or break. A young wife pushes against the boundaries of her marriage, and another seeks a means of surviving within hers. A group of teenagers dare one another to jump into a flooded quarry, the weakest swimmer still awaiting his turn. A laborer lies trapped under rocks and dry limestone dust as his fellow workers attempt a risky rescue. And meanwhile a fractured portrait of Becky emerges at the edges of our vision—a girl swimming, climbing, and smearing dirt onto a scared boy’s face, images to be cherished and challenged as the search for her goes on.

Praise For The Reservoir Tapes

Praise for The Reservoir Tapes

“A companion piece to his Man Booker–longlisted Reservoir 13, McGregor's latest works perfectly well as a stand–alone, offering an alternately sweet and suspenseful depiction of a community as it reacts, person by person, to the disappearance of a teenage girl.” —Entertainment Weekly

“Turns the concept of a thriller on its head, building suspense through a close examination of the everyday trials of witnesses, neighbors, and those simply passing by. The result is sharp, brooding work about the evils present in men and the cruel desires that lurk just below the surface.” —Cedar Rapids Gazette (Iowa)

“McGregor returns to an English village touched by the mystery of a young girl's disappearance to delve deeper into its daily life...[in] spare, elliptical tales...This collection is a fresh reminder of his versatility and talent.” —Shelf Awareness

“In the follow–up to his Costa Award–winning novel Reservoir 13, McGregor's newest book focuses on the crime at the center of its predecessor.”—The Millions

“A brilliant book about social realities . . . A thriller of another kind, one where the writing is deft and the mood uneasy, this book illuminates the complexities of the human condition in a truly imaginative way. —Literary Hub

“On its own, this book is a noteworthy event. When put in conversation with Reservoir 13, it is nothing short of a remarkable experiment in storytelling. McGregor is a must–read writer.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“McGregor demonstrates an extraordinary ability to create complex, multidimensional characters in only a few spare sentences. He is also a master of mood, investing his stories with an air of the ominous while proving also to be a superb stylist . . . A memorable celebration of literary fiction.” —Booklist (starred review)

“An electrifying new novel . . . stylish and alarming.” —Los Angeles Times

“McGregor is a maestro at demonstrating the reverberations of catastrophe across space and time, building strong backstory and consequences in only a few lines. As a stand–alone, the novel is quietly consuming, but as a companion to Reservoir 13, it serves as an exquisite elaboration on the mysterious characters that are the heart of both novels.” —Publishers Weekly

Catapult, 9781936787913, 176pp.

Publication Date: August 7, 2018

About the Author

Jon McGregor is the author of four novels and two story collections. He is the winner of the International Dublin Literary Award, the Costa Novel Award, the Betty Trask Prize, the Somerset Maugham Award, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters E. M. Forster Award, and has been long–listed three times for the Man Booker Prize, most recently in 2017 for Reservoir 13. He is professor of creative writing at the University of Nottingham, England, where he edits The Letters Page, a literary journal in letters.