Carmen Maria Machado on the Darkness Behind Patricia Highsmith

January 13, 2021

At the Guardian, Carmen Maria Machado reflects on the complicated, “fundamentally difficult” work of suspense writer Patricia Highsmith. “If you read the genres of suspense,” Machado writes, “crime and mystery and horror in its many iterations – you know the sensation of allowing a master of her craft to pursue you through a maze; the tingly energy of the chase, the eroticism of encountering the end of the line. ‘Murder,’ Highsmith wrote in her diary in 1950, ‘is a kind of making love, a kind of possessing.’ When you read one of Highsmith’s stories, you’ve given her permission to follow you, catch you, take you apart. Get ready to run.”

is a writer and illustrator. She is the author of two illustrated books, Last Night's Reading (Penguin Books, 2015) and Sanpaku (Archaia 2018).