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The Kid doesn't know where her parents are. They left with a promise to come back months ago, and now their 17-year-old daughter is stranded on Swan Island.
Swan isn't just any island; it is home to an eccentric old age separatist community who have shunned life on the mainland for a haven which is rapidly sinking into the ocean. The Kid's arrival threatens to burst the idyllic bubble that the elderly residents have so carefully constructed - an unwelcome reminder of the life they left behind and one they want rid of.
Cygnet is the story of a young woman battling against the thrashing waves of loneliness and depression and how she learns to find hope, laughter and her own voice in a world that's crumbling around her.
"Terribly moving. A clear-sighted, poignant rumination on loneliness, love, the melancholy of age and of youth - and, in its quiet way, the end of the world." (China Mieville)
"A sad, funny, highly original novel. Not since Holden Caulfield have I been so captivated by a first-person voice as the one Season Butler creates in Cygnet." (Blake Morrison, author of Things My Mother Never Told Me)