A page-turning modern gothic about a marriage and road trip gone hauntingly awry
A New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice
“Pittard deserves the attention of anyone in search of today’s best fiction.” — Washington Post
“Revelatory.” — The New Yorker
“[Listen to Me] gripped me completely and even gave me nightmares, which is high praise in my book.” — Chicago Tribune
Mark and Maggie’s annual drive east to visit family has gotten off to a rocky start. By the time they’re on the road, it’s late, a storm is brewing, and they are no longer speaking to each other. Adding to the stress, Maggie—recently mugged at gunpoint—is lately not herself, and Mark is at a loss about what to make of the stranger he calls his wife. When the couple is forced to stop for the night at a remote inn completely without power, Maggie’s paranoia reaches an all-time and terrifying high. But as Mark finds himself threatened in a dark parking lot, it’s Maggie who takes control.
“Pittard proves herself a master of ordinary suspense.” — New York Times
“Listen to Me elides so many genres that it’s Houdini-like, bursting through constraints. It moves between its two characters’ inner lives as effortlessly as an Olympic swimmer strokes through water.” — Ann Beattie, Paris Review blog
“A psychologically complex, addictive, and quick-moving read. I didn’t want it to end!” — M.O. Walsh, author of New York Times best-selling novel My Sunshine Away
A road trip from Chicago to Virginia is transformed into a complex mental journey in Pittard's (Reunion) third novel. Mark and Maggie, a 30-something couple, are coping with the aftermath of Maggie's mugging at gunpoint. To make matters worse, an attacker with a similar MO subsequently murdered a neighbor. Mark decides to push up the date of their annual visit to his parents' cottage in Virginia to give Maggie who has taken to wearing a bathrobe, zoning out and scouring the Internet for negative stories, and hiding a knife under the mattress a much-needed break. Soon into their journey, a destructive storm forces them to find shelter in an out-of-the-way hotel. While the storm rages outside, the characters contemplate their own inner storms. Mark, a college professor, frustrated and baffled by his wife's increasing dysfunction, considers an affair with a former research assistant, while feeling fiercely protective of his wife. Maggie, a veterinarian, stymied by her fears, longs to get back to her normal self. Chilling events ratchet up the suspense as well as magnify the couple's strengths and weaknesses in Pittard's memorable examination of the precarious terrain of marriage.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Listen to Me
An unusual read concerning obsessive fear behavior which become somewhat bore some as it was related. But two-thirds through the reading I was stimulated and eager to move the plot along. In the end, I found the comparison to today's social decline expertly defined and the final optimistic hope, which we all must hold onto tightly, very satisfying.
A Slow Burn Until the End.....
One of the most unique novels I've read. A slow build-up to a very suspenseful end. It sound cliché, but you think about the characters long after the novel is through. Truly enjoyed it.
Listen to Me
I bought this book expecting it to be a “suspenseful Hitchcock-like mystery” according to some reviews. Instead I wasted $11.99 on a disappointing book whose characters are unlikeable, plot is unbelievable and reviews are untrue. I want a refund, iBooks!