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Three Ways to Disappear

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4.32  ·  Rating details ·  143 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Leaving behind a nomadic and dangerous career as a journalist, Sarah DeVaughan returns to India, the country of her childhood and a place of unspeakable family tragedy, to help preserve the endangered Bengal tigers. Meanwhile, at home in Kentucky, her sister, Quinn--also deeply scarred by the past and herself a keeper of secrets--tries to support her sister, even as she fe ...more
Paperback, 316 pages
Published July 16th 2019 by Ashland Creek Press
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Average rating 4.32  · 
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Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Aug 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Equal parts family drama and environmental fiction. ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

Sarah DeVaughan has been a journalist, living on the edge, facing dangerous assignments, when she decides to leave and move back to India, her childhood home. There she must face a past family tragedy, and her aim? To help with Bengal tiger preservation. Did I ever mention the Bengal tiger is one of my favorite animals?

Back in Kentucky, Sarah’s sister, Quinn, is fragile and scarred, and she is afraid that Sarah’s choice to go to Ind
...more
Kimberly Dawn
Apr 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I’m in awe and in love with this book! Three Ways to Disappear is both an absorbing family drama as well as an environmental fiction novel. It is a story as passionate about the restoration and healing of a family as well as the survival of the majestic Bengal tigers, an endangered species.

Set in the year 2000, Sarah returns to India, the land of her early childhood, to work for the conservation of Bengal tigers as a staff member of Tiger Survival, which is based at the lush Ranthambore tiger re
...more
Elizabeth George
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Katy Yocum applied for a grant from the Elizabeth George Foundation because she wanted to go to India and photograph tigers for a book she intended to write. The board approved her application on the strength of her writing and her letters of recommendation although we were worried about the tiger part and asked that she get a very good telephoto lens. This book is the result of the trip she took and the hard work that followed.

It's very good on many levels. It's a family story, it's a love sto
...more
Andrea
Let there be no doubt - I adored this book! With its main themes of animal conservation and sisterhood it was always going to draw me in, but for a debut novel I was surprised at just how accomplished it was. Tremendously moving, and very well-written.

Jaded with her life as a globe-trotting journalist, covering wars and natural disasters, Sarah DeVaughan leaves her mother and sister behind in Kentucky and takes a new job in the land of her birth, working for a tiger conservation NGO near Rantham
...more
Prathap
Apr 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Not since I read Amitav Ghosh's The Hungry Tide have I been moved by another environmental fiction like did with Three Ways to Disappear. Exquisitely written and tenderly narrated, Katy Yocom's narration is smooth as a knife on a ripe banana even when it delivers the most horrifying plot point. Yocom is sensitive to the landscape and people she writes about and, as an Indian I empathized with a lot of details told in the book. The impressive details and nuances of village life she brings to her ...more
Ann Schwarz
Apr 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: literary-fiction
Author Katy Yocum's debut novel Three Ways to Disappear is a rich and compelling read. It deftly intertwines themes of family, the connections between humanity and the balance of nature, and the impact secrets can have on relationships, whether they be between family members or sweethearts. It took me two days after finishing this book to gather my thoughts and feelings into coherency, because by the end of the book I was so emotionally invested in these characters and what would become of them. ...more
Moony (The Burglar Baggins) MeowPoff
Got this at Netgalley
It was very interesting to read about how one invest so much in Tigers and their life ad survival all while struggle with her own life and getting connection with her sister, yet again. I didn't have any expetations for this one, but the book was interesting and moving. Though it took time for me to connect with both the sisters, and it felt like when i did, it was over. That was a little sad.
...more
jo
Aug 25, 2019 marked it as read-enough
Shelves: netgalley
I have serious problems with this book. The story is well-written, well-articulated and compelling but it perpetuates the damaging trope of white saviorism. Every time we put -- in reality, in fiction, in our reporting on things -- energetic and well-meaning Western white people at the center of a critical situation affecting the life of subaltern communities of color, we feed into the fantasy that

1) privileged white people have something to give that subaltern POCs don't already have,
2) the n
...more
Lori
Apr 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This lovely, compact novel was a delight to read, and a great pick for book clubs. Told in alternating points of view, this is a story of two sisters who are more different than alike in their complicated responses to the death of their brother that ended their happy ex-pat childhood in India and broke their family apart. It’s also a story about tigers and community and survival and the stories we tell ourselves.

Sarah, the younger sister, is a divorced, disillusioned journalist who decides to m
...more
Jill Dobbe
Apr 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
A story of an American family who grew up in India, then left early because of a family tragedy. Each family member deals with the tragedy in their own way, however, it casts a shadow over each of their lives. The secrets and sadness break through when one daughter returns to India to help save the Bengal tigers while finding love along the way.

Three Ways to Disappear is a story about culture, nature, and family relationships. It is well written and engaging until the very end. As someone who li
...more
Kitty Cook
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is so rich and delicious I gained 5 lbs. reading it and I’m not even mad. What a sumptuous tale of tigers, forbidden love, broken families, grief, and sisterhood on two continents. Yocom does a marvelous job describing the issues facing conservation in India and dropping some mad interesting tiger facts against a heartbreaking tale that burns as slow and sensual as a stick of incense. READ THIS BOOK!
Mary S. R.
I received an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to the publisher, Ashland Creek Press!

Wow! I'm unbelievably excited for this Multicultural Women's Fiction :)

Leaving behind a nomadic and dangerous career as a journalist, Sarah DeVaughan returns to India, the country of her childhood and a place of unspeakable family tragedy, to help preserve the endangered Bengal tigers. Meanwhile, at home in Kentucky, her sister, Quinn—also deeply scarred by the past and herself
...more
Alexandra WhimsyPages
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
...there was Machli, lying at the lakeside, regal in repose. Shaggy and thin as she was, she was still glorious.
.

In this brilliant debut novel, Katy Yocom brings us closer to the fatal reality of the extinction of Bengal tigers, layering her novel with intricate family relationships, and emotionally-gripping journey of two sisters, Sarah and Quinn.

«Three Ways to Disappear» is by far one of the best Literary Fiction books of this year! With such a powerful first novel, Katy Yocom
...more
Adrienne
Sep 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: india
A beautifully written, rich novel encompassing an American family's life changing tragedy, Bengal Tiger conservation, empowering women, a romance, and most interesting was being transported to India and learning much about the lives and customs of a local community. ...more
Janelle Fila
Jul 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
The setting and the stories about the tigers are so magnificent in this book, you could read it for that alone. I absolutely fell in love with India and had my heart wrenched out by the constant struggles of its people, the conservationists, and the tigers. To be that dependent and affected by mother nature and poverty really made me stop and reflect on my own life (and all of the things I am grateful for!) I really enjoyed Sarah's story and her connection with these big, beautiful tigers (and t ...more
Amber
May 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Sarah DeVaughan always knew Louisville wasn't her home, her older sister Quinn describing her as "a citizen of the world", her journalism career taking her to far flung corners of the earth. War zones, human interest stories, feeling the need to make these people known, yet having difficulty accepting that not everyone wanted to know what happened after. A woman invested in her career, turning it into a lifestyle. A surviving twin.
Sarah was nothing like Quinn. Quinn, who had settled down, who ne
...more
Mary Popham
May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A family tragedy affects every member, and each reacts in a different way. The characters in Katy Yocom’s debut novel live in diverse settings from Ranthambore in northern India, where the children of the DeVaughan family grew up, to Louisville, Kentucky. The story is unveiled from dual points of view between a surviving twin, Sarah, who chooses to return to India to work with “Tiger Survival,” and her older sister, Quinn, also a mother of twins who has never lost the fear of the differences in ...more
Sue
May 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The cover grabbed me and just as quickly so did the story! It is set in both the US and India and I really appreciated both the family drama and how well balanced it was with the conservationist angle. It is a powerful read that touches on so many topics, familial, environmental, multicultural and political without a moment of boredom. It was interesting to see how each sister responded to the loss of their brother and how their lives took totally different paths. I would like the thank Net Gall ...more
Jill
Nov 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Reading this book was like noticing the array of colors and details of a celebrated painting, thanks to its vivid and lyrical language, while also embracing all the emotions it makes you feel. In this case, there was hope, love, and a deep sense of loss.

The characters are authentic, real to the point that I found myself wondering how certain ones are handling life now.

This book also does a superb job of handling cultural expectations and issues with care and sensitivity. The author made them a
...more
Alison L
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was such a pleasant surprise! The characters and setting pulled me right in, keeping up the momentum until the very end.

I thought the character development between the two sisters was one of the most impressive aspects. A lot of novels are using different perspectives now, but I think that it was done particularly well in this book. You really felt the difference between Quinn and Sarah, in their personalities as well as a sense that their lives, they are on different paths. Really rea
...more
Theresa Smith
Jul 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
‘A critically endangered top predator, the linchpin of entire ecosystems.’

Those who have been following along for a while now might have picked up on my love for eco-literature. You might have also seen a gravitational lean towards books featuring tigers. Three Ways To Disappear is the first novel I’ve had the pleasure of reading that combines these two interests: an environmental read about saving tigers, and it’s also set in India, a place I love to read about – it’s as if the universe whisper
...more
Claire
May 23, 2020 rated it liked it
Sarah has recently left journalism due to her frustration at not being able to do more than just tell a story. The forced abandonment her profession demands, the development of whatever it is journalists grow, to enable them to walk away, move on to the next story.

So she returns to the country where she spent her early childhood, where mysteries about their time there still remain. India. She joins a tiger protection organisation and helps raise awareness of the issues of a community, where huma
...more
eyes.2c
Tygre tygre burning bright!

What an unusual story; intriguing and immersing with the switch between past reminiscences and the current day of two sisters. Sarah DeVaughan, a disillusioned journalist is“Done. With journalism.” She's covered the worst of areas evidencing man's inhumanity to man and is now turning her back on the world of war and heartbreak for what will become a different sort of heartbreak, the world of animal protection and sanctuaries. A world of poaching, and of death and life
...more
Chava
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
WOW. Absolutely one of my favorite books so far this year. Katy Yocom's writing has that uncanny ability to immerse you into the setting of the story, so that you lose track of time and place while you read. When you stop reading, you might be a little out of sorts as you return to reality. I'm not exaggerating - it's that good!

I really connected with the two sisters who make up the main characters, but especially Sarah. This book explores themes of family and alienation, as well as idealism, c
...more
Colleen
May 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
There's no doing good in one way without doing harm in another.

At first, I was sure I was going to be bored by this book: sisters Quinn and Sarah, bound together by family love and the trauma of losing their brother long ago, but always at odds over the lifestyle choices of each--it felt like a story I had read before.

However, this book has so much more to offer than just family drama, although that develops into an important and compelling part of the narrative. The politics and societal mores
...more
Savannah (forest_reader)
I honestly don't know how to rate this. I love tigers and India with all my heart, so I expected to love this book. And I just...didn't. However, it did shake me and cause me to feel deeply about how horrible the injustices of the world are.

This story follows two sisters and their journeys to finding happiness after a horrible past in India. Quinn, a wife and mother in Kentucky, tries to survive under the weight of her terrible secret. Her sister, Sarah, returns to India to find her peace by jo
...more
Deidre
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fictive
Full disclosure I know the author and read part of this book years ago when it was in draft. However, had I just picked this up in a store, I believe I would be equally enthralled. Katy's writing is rich in the details that make great travel writing while not stinting on the emotion that truly carries this book. It's a story not just of the issues facing nature's relationship with mankind but also concerns of wildlife preservation, emerging economies, and women's rights. Generally tackling so ma ...more
Heather Fineisen
Jul 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
I was drawn to this book because of the Author's ties to my hometown of Louisville, Kentucky.But the real star of the story is India and specifically a conservation park. Colors, smells, textures all come to life through exquisite storytelling. Tigers and their natural habitat are showcased and the Author demonstrates knowledge of such through her research and trip to India. A love story and a reconnection of sisters is a springboard for the conservation and well executed. An author to watch. ...more
Heather Wyatt
Jul 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautiful, captivating and enlightening story.
Jenny (Bookbookowl)
Aug 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you so much to Smith Publicity for providing me with a copy of Three Ways to Disappear, in exchange for an honest review.


Sarah and Quinn are sisters who grew up in India, but were returned to America by their mother after a terrible family tragedy. Years later, Sarah decides to head back to India, to work with a foundation protecting the dwindling tiger numbers. As Sarah tries to fit in with local customs, while battling the dangers they pose to her, she experiences the wonder of love – fo
...more
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