Dawnland is about love of all kinds—romantic, doomed, familial, fatalistic, erotic. It’s about damaged people standing on cliffs both literal and metaphorical, and the healing power of nature.

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Truth Comes at What Price?

As summer draws to a close, the idyllic shores of Cape Cod hold a stormy forecast. Two families, bound by years of tradition at their beloved beach house, are on the brink of shattering.

April and Oliver are in-laws with a tangled past. As the family vacation unfolds, their buried secret threatens to erupt like a rogue wave, exposing long-held resentments.

Fault lines appear between spouses, siblings, parents and children. Lochlann, April’s volatile teenager, becomes ground zero for an inevitable earthquake.

Will truth force deeper, more authentic relationships or destroy them irreparably?

In this wise and lyrical novel by the author of April & Oliver, old secrets, family ties, and the unforgiving ocean collide in a summer of reckoning.

Advance praise

Occasionally a book burns into your occipital lobe unable to leave you. How do you stop longing for something you can never have? Dawnland is a poignant reminder that the longings inside of us never go away. Tess Callahan killed me softly with this book. My heart is still in her hands…

Tarryn Fisher

NY Times Bestselling Author of "The Wives" and "Good Half Gone"

Tess Callahan works magic in her novel DAWNLAND, writing with mesmerizing lyricism and wisdom about an extended family’s fraught week on Cape Cod. On the eve of their widowed father’s second marriage, two brothers as different as night and day gather with their wives and children for an annual vacation by the ocean that turns out to be anything but mundane. DAWNLAND is a deeply intelligent story about marriage, parenting, adolescence, and the challenge of reckoning with one’s choices. I loved it.

Karen Dukess

author of "The Last Book Party"

Tess Callahan writes with furious urgency about yearning and desire. As family secrets are gradually revealed, the reader begins to glimpse how we are all complicit in the dance. Emotionally powerful, Dawnland explores questions of betrayal, guilt and loss, and the high cost we must pay for genuine freedom. The ending will stay with you long after you turn the final page.

Alan Watt

LA Times bestselling author of "Diamond Dogs" and "The 90-Day Novel"

Dawnland is about love of all kinds—romantic, doomed, familial, fatalistic, erotic. It is about damaged people standing on cliffs both literal and metaphorical, and how music can slip a wedding ring off as quick as you please—with only a little pain at the knuckle.”

Elizabeth Barbato

author of "Elpenor Falls"

About Tess

Tess Callahan is the author of the novels April & Oliver and Dawnland. Her essays and stories have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Writer’s Digest, National Public Radio, Agni, Narrative Magazine, AWP Notebook, Newsday, The Common, the Best American Poetry blog, and elsewhere. Her TEDx talk on creativity is titled, “The Love Affair Between Creativity & Constraint.” Tess is graduate of Boston College and Bennington College Writing Seminars and teaches creative writing and meditation. She curates Muse-feed.com, a toolbox for aspiring writers. A dual citizen of the United States and Ireland, she lives in Cape Cod and Northern New Jersey with her family and number one life coach, her dog.