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Follow Me Down

3.86  ·  Rating Details ·  76 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
It begins with an envelope. Twenty years old, maybe more, with the dust of the dead-letter office still clinging to the stained, fraying paper. It arrives in the mailbox of Lucy with the address of a vacant neighborhood lot barely legible on the front. Inside she finds only a photograph of a man she does not recognize, but whose face captivates her instantly. She hunts for ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published June 7th 2011 by Red Lemonade/Cursor
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Nov 20, 2013 Brian rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: The Post Master General
Recommended to Brian by: Proustitute
If you have ever started reading a book on an airplane, and upon landing have sat yourself back with the huddled masses of air travelers to finish the book before getting back to your real life, then you'll understand that this just happened to me with this novel.

Stark's protagonist, the traffic-stoppingly beautiful Lucy has a name that doesn't fit her and a life that is wearing thin in crucial patches. What is she running from? How can she be so good at finding all the mistakes others make but
Dec 14, 2011 Matt rated it liked it
This novel is definitely a type, an exploration of city streets by an interested, artistic outsider. I think, honestly, we used to call it a Lower East Side novel, but that gentrification has complicated that marker. But here, we have a very attractive redhead who is, in some senses, chasing her brother who has disappeared, not in a dramatic way but more than anything metaphorically, into drug abuse, and she is now living his life, hoping for a trace. This motivates the main plot, tracking down ...more
Julie H.
Jun 21, 2011 Julie H. rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Follow Me Down contains a bit of a mystery surrounding a misdirected "dead letter" that arrives in a young woman's NYC (probably Brooklyn from the sounds of things) mailbox some 30 years after the fact. But it is not, in point of fact, a mystery story. Instead, it's an interesting bit of fiction in which the author's ability to describe the finely-honed awareness of people and place that women in particular (especially young attractive women) who live in urban areas develop about their surroundi ...more
T. Greenwood
Jun 06, 2011 T. Greenwood rated it really liked it
Kio Stark writes with intimacy and familiarity about this haunting and stark urban landscape. It reads like a dream -- atmospheric and impressionistic. The story is simple...a twenty year old letter arrives at Lucy's address, and she becomes obsessed with learning the story behind the photo. We follow her in her journey for a truth that has nothing to do with her, or possibly everything to do with her. Lucy, the protagonist, keeps people (including the reader) at a distance. The result is that h ...more
Richard Thomas
Jul 28, 2011 Richard Thomas rated it it was amazing
[Originally published at The Nervous Breakdown.]

“Sometimes what you want is to be somewhere you do not belong.”

Kio Stark’s lyrical Follow Me Down (Red Lemonade) is a densely packed novella that wanders the projects of New York City capturing the lives of the people that live there in glorious detail—photographs melting into still life paintings, fingers smudged from handling wet paint that should have been left to dry. Sometimes you get a little dirty when you dig, and sometimes people need to d
Jun 18, 2011 Todd rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
An absolutely phenomenally written book that is fast-paced, anxiety-ridden, and unequivocally captivating. Kio Stark develops a main character that can be summed up in one line from the text: obsession can be medicine. The main character is incredibly observant, as if the book was written to pay homage to all the people-watchers of the world.

The book is about a proofreader (another example of her obsessiveness) and her accidental reception of a letter; it captures her journey, a voyage that has
Laura J. W.
Jul 16, 2011 Laura J. W. rated it it was amazing
Kio Stark’s Follow Me Down, is one of those, “little-big” books that I love finding, and another one that I've read recently published by Red Lemonade. This book contains exquisite storytelling, beautiful writing, snapshots of images that are bits of a larger picture, very precise, an honest-to-goodness book—a human document that is unique. I love this book for what it is and I have dog-eared many favorite pages, underlining passages that resonate with Stark’s crisp vision, as if through a camer ...more
Kevin Adams
Nov 22, 2011 Kevin Adams rated it really liked it
Kio Stark's 'Follow Me Down' gets the readers interest from page one. We sit through an interesting and not at all too short 110 pages of Lucy's adventures through the neighborhoods of an unnamed town (Brooklyn, NY?) while she looks for the person and meaning of a lost photograph taken some 30 years earlier. Each chapter/month is packed with eccentrics roaming mostly trying to not engage with her.

Could the book have been longer? Sure but I think that would've added another layer that made it un
Mar 15, 2012 Amy rated it really liked it
I did like this book, but for me there was something missing. I can't put my finger on it exactly. Really amazing descriptions of neighborhood interactions and space, but I wasn't terribly into the story. But it was a well executed little book, and I'd read her next novel, provided she writes one (I'm not sure why, but I thought - for no real reason; not like I read it somewhere - that she was a poet - am I wrong?).
Dec 26, 2011 Dana rated it it was ok
The books summary of the story was quite misleading. Upon reading it, I was int-reed as portrait the story to flow of mystery and the unknown. It disappointed was told from a young girls view of how she wanted and longed for mystery but never quite got there. Come across strongly this this was the authors first novel. The author would set up the story line to lead you into suspense but never provide the drama related.
Aug 03, 2011 Adam rated it it was ok
The fact that I just finished this book and barely remember a thing about it is not a good sign. I think I liked parts of it, but found the whole thing trying a little too hard to be "literary." Also, the entire plot hinges on whether or not you buy the conceit that a woman is willing to risk life and limb to find out who an anonymous man in a picture is. I mean, come on, use a dildo like everyone else.
Thinking Chimp
Jun 05, 2013 Thinking Chimp rated it liked it
Beautiful words. Not a very compelling plot, and lots of bits that seemed to go nowhere, but if you want a book that shows how to construct beautiful sentences into beautifully crafted scenes of life then this is the one for you.
Vanessa Veselka
Jul 28, 2011 Vanessa Veselka rated it it was amazing
I'm a bad reviewer but I love this book. It wasn't one I could read in snippets, I had to really give myself over, but when I did, it was like a seductive opiate and the tone stayed with me for days. And yes, I am on the same press with KIO, but I would say that anyway. It's earned.
Jenny Wren
Beautiful. The kind of book I will come back to. The pleasure is not just in the story, but in the mood and the way Stark uses words.
Chris rated it it was amazing
Aug 21, 2011
Ylva Nora Ulvestad
Ylva Nora Ulvestad rated it liked it
Dec 12, 2012
Tobias rated it really liked it
May 31, 2011
Nick Ng
Nick Ng rated it liked it
Sep 12, 2015
Mike rated it it was amazing
Sep 26, 2012
Janel rated it it was ok
Aug 04, 2012
Rachel C
Rachel C rated it it was amazing
Sep 14, 2011
Laura rated it really liked it
Feb 19, 2012
Gavin rated it really liked it
Aug 22, 2011
Claire C-g
Claire C-g rated it liked it
Aug 25, 2012
Dävid Ö'brien
Dävid Ö'brien rated it it was ok
Apr 04, 2013
Colin N.
Colin N. rated it really liked it
May 02, 2012
Rachel K
Rachel K rated it really liked it
Apr 15, 2012
Dave rated it it was amazing
Mar 10, 2015
Sean rated it it was amazing
Apr 19, 2012
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I'm a writer, teacher, researcher, and passionate activist for independent learning. I currently coordinate the Knight-Mozilla OpenNews Learning initiative. I also write fiction, my first novel is Follow Me Down (2011).
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