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Clay Tongue: A Novelette

4.53  ·  Rating details ·  19 ratings  ·  18 reviews
From the author of the award-winning Pale Highway and the radio play Something in the Nothing comes a short fantasy of love, shyness, and the secrets of human communication.

Katie Mirowitz is a small little girl with an even smaller little voice. She possesses a deep love for her grandfather, who suffers from aphasia after a bad stroke cuts loose the part of his brain that
Paperback, 52 pages
Published December 19th 2016
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Average rating 4.53  · 
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Ellie Mitchell
Jan 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Clay Tongue is a heart warming tale revolving around young Katie Mirowitz and her grandfather. I thought this was a beautiful short story with a well crafted plot and a delightful cast of characters.

Grandfather hasn't been able to speak since he had a stroke two years prior. With the threat of him possibly having to leave, Katie sets out to find the magical wish granting Golem that she read about in her grandfather's notes.

I found the storyline to be predictable but in a good way. I could follow
N.A. Granger
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Clay Tongue was all too short for this reader. It is described as a short fantasy about the unspoken love between a shy little girl and her grandfather, the secrets of human communication, and discovered bravery.
Katie Mirowitz lives in a household with her parents and her grandfather. She is so shy and afraid to speak she can’t even tell her mother that she loves her, but her grandfather is her lodestone, the one person with whom she can talk. When he has a stroke leaving him with aphasia, the i
Sophie (Blame Chocolate) *on hiatus*
I was contacted by the author and provided with a copy for an honest review.

Clay Tongue is an incredibly heart-warming story about a little girl coping with her grandfather's sudden illness.

Katie is a special girl who has trouble communicating with others, and is not quite able to show her feelings to anyone. However, this apparent social impediment allows her to understand her aphasic grandfather like no one else.

Reading about Katie and her grandfather's bond made me feel really happy inside,
Dec 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: december-2016
Disclaimer: I received an ebook version of this novelette from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The gorgeous cover to this novelette is a perfect match for the beautiful language and sweet story contained within. This short tale is well worth checking out for a quick escape.

The introduction of this piece is a bit slow, and doesn’t give any hint that this is anything other than a purely literary story. I was immediately intrigued by the use of Jewish protagonists, which I don’t often s
Jackie Turner
I was provided with an e-copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Honestly, I thought this was an amazing novellete and I'm so happy Nicholas Conley contacted me and asked if I'd like to read and review.

The story starts out with ten year old, Katie - who I actually related to in the fact that we're both quiet and told to speak up - and the story behind her grandfather's stroke.

It's heartwarming and a reminder of the childlike innocence we had all had once upon a time. D
C.S. Wilde
Dec 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This story is as gentle as a snowflake and yet, so very powerful. Nicholas Conley has the ability to touch even the darkest hearts with his stories. This outstanding artwork sculpted with words might make you cry, and smile, and it will be totally worth it.
Beautiful, heartfelt and touching, this is by far one of the best reads of 2016.
Nikki Mitchell
Mar 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In this short novelette, a 10-year-old Jewish girl named Katie loves her grandfather. But his once story-telling brain is now all jumbled up after he suffered a stroke 2 years ago and now lives with aphasia, unable to talk or write. Even so, Katie is able to communicate with him just as well as before, as she herself is not much of a talker. In fact, her parents and other adults are constantly pushing her to talk more… When Katie catches a glimpse of her grandfather’s half-finished story of his ...more
May 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the second story I have read from Nicholas Conley. I was so impressed with his most recent novel, Intraterrestrial, that I just had to get his other books as well!

Clay Tongue is a novelette.  It's a super short read, but brimming over the edges with heart. Katie Mirowitz is a sweet 10-year-old girl who is super shy (so shy, she even has trouble talking to her mother). Her grandfather is the only one she feels a strong connection with and can talk to him without the slightest anxiety.  Ev
Jaffa Kintigh
This is a delightful modern day folktale as a girl explores the scary and wondrous world beyond her house in order to alleviate the family's frustrations in the wake of her beloved grandfather's stroke. He's been left aphasic, and the stress of caring for him weighs on the girl's mother. The tale builds on the Jewish lore of the golem, a clay-made servant that has the ability to grant wishes. Though, with a girl turning toward fantasy, albeit unknown potentially scary fantasy, in order to solve ...more
May 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book introduces you to Katie Mirowitz, a small shy girl. Learning a secret she sets out to hopefully help her grandfather talk again.

With Clay Tongue, Nicholas Conley has created a memorable and heart-warming story. It is a book that kept me glued to my Kindle, drawing me very close to Katie. Nicholas Conley created a wonderful story with a highly likeable main character. Katie and her grandfather are unforgettable; I would not in the least mind meeting them - if they weren't fictional. Kat
Betanda Shanam
Jul 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
I love a fable, who doesn’t? !

Katie, a young girl who struggles with mutism, finds it difficult to find the right words. Her beloved Grandad suffers from a similar problem. After his stoke he is frustratingly unable to effectively communicate what he wants to say despite having plenty to talk about. Katie is given an opportunity to give her grandad his voice back and have her deepest wish come true but at the last moment an unselfish action helps to change her life and that of a trapped soul.

Mar 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This review was originally posted on The Review Court

This was an amazing short story about a little girl who is brave enough to enter the woods in search of a wish to help her beloved Grandpa. The story is long enough to get the back story and is well-written. You can understand what Katie, our protagonist is going through. She and her grandpa were close and now that he's had a stroke she still loves him but she is sorry for him. He has lost his ability to speak. And then it seems her mother, hi
Aug 31, 2017 rated it liked it
I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

Succinct opening chapter in which the scene was set and Kate's Granddad was introduced. The reader instinctively knew how big a part of Kate's life he was.

Clay Tongue was written very well but for me, was far too short. I wasn't sure if I missed some hidden meaning or moral.

The main point for me was definitely the relationship between a young girl and her Grandfather.
Ste J
Jan 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The succinct nature of such works as this always leaves a challenge for the hard done to reviewer but nevertheless the workout is good after the Christmas binge. The cover is a wonderful piece of art and gives nothing away, only what the imagination speculates on. More of this type of book presentation would certainly be a more pleasing state of affairs for all readers and casual observers alike.

The first chapter is a genuinely moving entrance into the life of a young girl Katie, who is trying t
Tamara Morning
Dec 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
Katie Mirowitz isn’t very big, but her love for her grandfather is. After suffering a stroke, he can no longer talk, but Katie’s relationship with him is still a bright spot in her life, as her family struggles to keep things together. Then Katie finds her grandfather’s old journal, full of tales of a creature from myth. She also finds a key. So Katie sets off into the woods in search of the creature, desperate to have her wish granted, a wish that will save her family.

Clay Tongue isn’t very lon
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Oh my heart!

Like everything I’ve read from Nicholas Conley, the Clay Tongue is intelligent, thought-provoking, and has characters with many layers. I absolutely loved it.
Marian Thorpe
Dec 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A lovely story of hope and the power of love and belief in what is right, rather than easy. It would be a good story to read out loud to the assembled family over the holiday season.
rated it really liked it
Dec 04, 2019
Cathy Ryan
Apr 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Clay Tongue is a moving story of a little girl’s belief, determination and courage. Young Katie Mirowitz is a quiet, shy child, except when she’s with her Grandfather. Katie loves talking to him, even now when he can’t form coherent words anymore after his stroke, they always manage to communicate one way or another. But Grandfather is keeping a secret, Katie saw him trying to hide his journal. The knowledge gives her an unfamiliar, and not altogether comfortable, feeling in her heart.

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Nicholas Conley is an award-winning Jewish American author, journalist, playwright, and coffee vigilante. His books, such as Knight in Paper Armor, Pale Highway, Clay Tongue: A Novelette, and Intraterrestrial, merge science fiction narratives with hard-hitting examinations of social issues. Originally from California, he now lives in New Hampshire.

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