"Fans of Shakespeare’s The Tempest will find much to enjoy, as will readers eager for a luxurious—but not escapist—1920s period piece.[...]An intriguing story about the rot that lies beneath splendor."
"This dizzying struggle over power, magic, and dreams will sink readers into this fantasy's web of ambition and family tension. A strong choice for libraries serving teens."
School Library Journal
"Epiphanies come fast and furious—the main action unfolds in 24 hours via Mae’s melodramatic, self-serious narration—in a novel whose sumptuous setting alongside the careless, magical rich proffers undeniable pleasures."
"[A] smashing Shakespearean historical fantasy."
"Samantha Cohoe’s intriguing mashup of Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby makes for a thoroughly immersive read[...]BRIGHT RUINED THINGS is a more insightful novel than readers might expect, while also devoting a fair amount of its pages to considering what it means to be a person of integrity who chooses to stand up to the ugliness of power at all costs. I’ll take some Gatsby with my Shakespeare any day, as long as Cohoe is the one doing the writing."
"Cohoe’s sophomore novel...is filled with magic, romance, secrets, and lies."
"Mae isn’t a plucky heroine but a hungry young woman realizing that, exploited though she is, she benefits from a system of colonial oppression. Cohoe[...] ably combines a postcolonial reading of The Tempest with the literary tradition of edgy, electric aristocrats and outsiders in London’s 1920s social scene."
"A deftly-plotted tale about ambition and belonging, BRIGHT RUINED THINGS takes Shakespeare’s The Tempest and brilliantly reimagines its themes of family and love. Cohoe writes with a magic that dazzles and cuts right to the core."
Chloe Gong, #1 New York Times bestselling author of THESE VIOLENT DELIGHTS
"I was utterly captivated by the world Samantha Cohoe conjured on this mysterious island, where magic and power rule hand-in-hand with intrigue and desire. A wealthy family, a web of secrets about the past, and a cast of glittering characters who feel like they just stepped out from one of The Great Gatsby's legendary parties―what's not to love? I was swept right along with Mae as she digs in to uncover the truth behind the magic wielded by the Prosper family and wrestles with her own desire to grasp hold of power she's long been denied."
Lisa DeSelm, author of The Puppetmaster’s Apprentice