Swimming at Night
People go traveling for two reasons: because they are searching for something, or they are running from something.
Katie’s world is shattered by the news that her headstrong and bohemian younger sister, Mia, has been found dead at the bottom of a cliff in Bali. The authorities say that Mia jumped—that her death was a suicide.
Although they’d hardly spoken to each other since Mia suddenly left on an around-the-world trip six months earlier, Katie refuses to accept that her sister would have taken her own life. Distraught that they never made peace, Katie leaves behind her orderly, sheltered life in London and embarks on a journey to discover the truth. With only the entries of Mia’s travel journal as her guide, Katie retraces the last few months of her sister’s life, and—page by page, country by country—begins to uncover the mystery surrounding her death.
“A great read for fans of smart contemporary women’s fiction as well as thriller and mystery readers” (Library Journal, starred review), Swimming at Night weaves together exotic settings, suspenseful plot twists, and familial bonds in a powerful tale of secrets, loss, and forgiveness.
Reading Group Guide
The relationship between sisters is never simple, as Lucy Clarke illustrates in her debut novel, Swimming at Night. Katie and Mia shared the ups and downs of sisterhood—the fierce love and loyalty, the friendship, as well as the jealousy, disappointment, and anger. But a late-night visit from the police changes everything when Katie learns that Mia has been found dead in Bali. Unwilling to believe the evidence pointing toward suicide, Katie flies around the world following the entries in Mia’s travel journal—searching for truth, understanding, and finally, forgiveness.
Topics & Questions for Discussion
1. Did you believe that Mia committed suicide? Did you change your mind about whether or not she did throughout the course of the story? If so, at which points and why?
2. There’s a fine line between love and hate when it comes to sisters: “Sometimes the line between the two was so fine it was difficult to see which side you were standing on” ( see more