“A poetic work in which burdens of familial love and inherited mysteries prove too much to bear.” –The New Yorker
“Mesmerizing…NDiaye’s devastating tale addresses the psychic pain of prejudice, class consciousness, discrimination, and self-loathing only to end in a satisfying moment of unexpected hope.”
—Booklist (starred review)
Hypnotic…NDiaye writes profoundly disturbing novels in such riveting prose that one cannot look away.
—Library Journal (starred review)
Mysterious…Eerie…[a] beautifully crafted novel
Elegant … bizarrely lovely… NDiaye’s gift with language…[is] exquisite. She reveals only as much reality as she wants to at any given moment—and therein lies her magic.
“If any contemporary European writer is on the verge of Ferrante-like recognition, it’s NDiaye, and deservedly so.”
“NDiaye’s women . . . are so psychologically rich that their ever-roving minds are more the story than the unreal worlds in which they move . . . . [R]eaders weary of the present-day literary landscape should take notice. By straddling the realistic and the fantastic, by touching on the needs of the present moment and presenting new answers to age-old dilemmas, NDiaye is writing a literature both innovative and incredible.”
—Jeffery Zuckerman, The New Republic
“Unflinching and hypnotic…a psychological labyrinth, elegantly evoked in all its horror.. [NDiaye’s] work has [an] uncanny ability to grasp the deeply inflected nuances of the heart. The sharp-edged writing in Ladivine warrants spending time with her bleak vision… … NDiaye demands of the reader the same clear-eyed courage that she employs crafting this haunting, disturbing novel.”
—Jean Zimmerman, NPR
“A work of immense power and mystery…. Ladivine is a record of a trauma severe enough to haunt generations. It’s a wild ghost story, rooted in immigration and exile. The dislocated women of Ladivine are trapped in repeating narratives of violence and loss. They are all brave women who have come from a place where events in which they are involved have already occurred, events they are unaware of but are forced to revisit. It’s a form of self-belief, finally, that saves them, regardless of how grim their fates may appear. The ending of Ladivine is perfect, both poignant and strangely hopeful.”
—Patrick McGrath, The New York Times Book Review