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Bethany W. Pope

The Hungry and the Lost

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  • £10.99

This book will be released in July 2021

Pre-orders are charged at time of order and the book will be posted to you as soon as it becomes available.


'Reading Bethany W Pope is like being possessed. Lucious, visceral and fierce, the language pulses to bring the swamplands to life. Southern Gothic at its finest, The Hungry and the Lost slices through the darkness of progress and holds up the hearts that get crushed on the way. Not to be missed... I haven't felt this way since I read Jane Eyre. Dark, lavish and pulsing with luminous imagery, Pope is a master of Southern Gothic. A fever burns through every line of this book, a dark swamp of business, myth and belief, I couldn't put it down. Utterly absorbing.' - Angela Readman (author of Something like Breathing)


The herons have departed, leaving behind mangrove-tea waters, silt, the faint tang of salt... All that remains are the people, fewer of them every summer, clouds of mosquitoes.

Edwardian Florida. The swamplands of Tampa provide a tough but good living for those men hardy enough to brave the weather and the wildness. There are ripe pickings to be had in bird hunting; egret feathers plucked by the sack-full and sent away to adorn rich city-women’s hats. Wives for these rough hunters are ordered from catalogues, attractiveness graded by cooking skills and hip-width. When illness sweeps the area and the local minister dies, his widow, his beloved Rose, succumbs to madness. His daughter Joy must struggle to keep them both alive in what has become a skeleton town, rotting into the swamp and abandoned by all but the most ruthless.

Rich with visceral imagery, The Hungry and the Lost is a novel in true Southern Gothic style, pitting the worlds of myth and innocence against the rational grip of progress and modernity.


Bethany W. Pope has an MA and a PhD in Creative Writing, and has won many literary awards. Their poetry collections include: A Radiance, Crown of Thorns, The Gospel of Flies, Undisturbed Circles, The Rag and Boneyard, and Silage, which was described by The Guardian as 'literature as salvation'. Their debut novel, Masque, was published in 2016. Bethany currently lives and works in China.