emily geminder

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Dzanc Books / IndieBound

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“The girls of Geminder’s title may be dead, but her debut collection brims with life . . . A breathlessly fast-moving collection that leaves a reader enchanted, provoked, and curious about the little-noticed corners of the darkening world.”
The New York Times Book Review


“An eerie convergence of female identities and experiences across time and space . . .  Startling, far-reaching tales of women who haunt and are haunted.”

Kirkus Reviews (starred review)


“In her debut collection, Geminder covers a range of subjects and injects them with her own brand of liveliness and creativity . . . Geminder’s stories are refreshing, surprising, and evocative.” 

Publishers Weekly


“Geminder’s stories vary in time and place but are unified by parallel discussions of patriarchy, nation states, surveillance and trauma . . . If you’re excited by the connection between geo-politics, gender and ghosts, Dead Girls is right for you.”

Ms. Magazine


One of “100 Must-Read Contemporary Short Story Collections” 

Book Riot


“Geminder has an ability to give her words life, to render her themes experiential ... Ghosts flit through each story and we as the readers are left haunted. In a way, these stories themselves are ghosts, they burrow into the mind and endure.”

The Arkansas International


“Each story of this collection will startle you in its own unique way, but this is a collection that works as one, with the stories building on each other to create an unforgettable piece of art.”



“Geminder showcases an acute sensitivity to worlds both inside and out. There’s real delicacy to the craft but underneath all the skill is a shaking sense of purpose, and a great love of the brokenness and beauty of humanity. This is a substantive, memorable debut.”

Aimee Bender, author of The Color Master and The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake


“An electrifying read. Written in dreamy prose, these stories take the world we know and turn it inside out, making us question everything we think we know about our places in it. But don’t let the dream-like quality fool you: These stories have teeth. Seductive but fierce, full of keen insights and tenacious questions, Geminder’s fearless and utterly original debut collection will haunt and nourish you.”

Dana Johnson, author of In the Not Quite Dark and Elsewhere, California


“The stories in Geminder’s mesmerizing Dead Girls seamlessly weave gender and geopolitics and the dreamlike worlds of characters struggling to find hope and reason within their near apocalypses. The thread of unease that runs through the collection is insightful, rebellious, and righteous.”

Paul Tremblay, author of A Head Full of Ghosts and Disappearance at Devil’s Rock


“Emily Geminder’s stirring collection explores death-haunted scenarios from unexpected angles. Whether the characters are caught in the currents of Cambodian history or the private mythologies of an American summer, they’re often plunged into moments that dissolve all certainties about identity, consciousness, and the body. Etched with a matter-of-fact lyricism, Dead Girls will haunt you, sure, but that’s barely half the story.”

Jeff Jackson, author of Mira Corpora


“Failing families, wrenching emotional situations, and repeated lines link these stylish, haunting stories . . . ‘Dead Girls’ is a cultural autopsy of the different kinds of violence enacted on women, while ‘Edie’ is a tiny coming of age novel nestled in the middle of this ambitious collection.”

Paper Darts


“Every character speaks with a sense of quiet urgency—perhaps not an immediate urgency, but an existential one . . . Encounters with death enrich the characters, break them down, rebuild them. Death is the ultimate struggle, and it hangs over every word of this collection.”

jmww Journal


With lyric artistry and emotional force, Emily Geminder’s debut collection charts a vivid constellation of characters fleeing their own stories. A teenage runaway and her mute brother seek salvation in houses, buses, the backseats of cars. Preteen girls dial up the ghosts of fat girls. A crew of bomber pilots addresses the ash of villagers below. And from India to New York to Phnom Penh, dead girls both real and fantastic appear again and again: as obsession, as threat, as national myth and collective nightmare.