The Year of Fog

“Richmond gracefully explores the nature of memory and perception in key passages that never slow the suspense of the search…a page-turner with a philosophical bent.” Booklist

“A mesmerizing novel of loss and grief, hope and redemption, and the endurance of love.” Library Journal, starred review (one of Library Journal’s Best Books of the Year)

“In this spare page-turner, Richmond draws complex tensions from the setup of a child gone missing… The book is beautifully paced–one feels Abby’s clarity of purpose from the first page. The sure-handed denouement reflects the focus and restraint that Richmond brings to bear throughout.” Publishers Weekly

Grade: A. “Gripping…Richmond makes the reader feel the gamut of emotions, from the initial disbelief and blind hope to the nagging guilt and gnawing despair.” ~Alexis Burling,The Washington Post

“In The Year of Fog, Richmond gives us both a mystery and a meditation on memory. Profound, deeply moving, endlessly gripping; you will devour it in a weekend and turn it over to begin again.” ~Andrew Sean Greer, author of The Confessions of Max Tivoli

“What marks us, and how do we react to our impressions, both large and small, of life? These are the questions asked by San Francisco author Michelle Richmond in her wonderful second novel, “The Year of the Fog. Despite all its drama — and this heart-wrenching tale does ratchet up the tension — this is primarily a story of echoes and repercussions…spare, moving…it’s all done delicately, in almost poetic terms.” Clea Simon, The San Francisco Chronicle (read the review here)

“Richmond’s second novel is a startlingly original take on every parent’s worst nightmare…An unsettling and powerful punch of a book, The Year of Fog unfolds as a waking dream about the persistence of memory and the extraordinary force of love.” Cookie Magazine

“A good part of what makes ‘The Year of Fog’ compulsively readable is the voice of its narrator. Abby’s tone is quietly conversational, almost as though she is sitting across the table and, over a cup of coffee, calmly telling her tale. The dispassionate tone reveals a brutally honest teller, and only serves to heighten the tension of the story…both believable and bittersweet.” Robin Vidimos, The Denver Post

“A harrowing, beautifully written story of a photographer and soon-to-be stepmom whose momentary lapse in attention results in the disappearance of her fiance’s little girl on a foggy beach in San Francisco. What happened to 6-year-old Emma? The answer, and its implications, will keep you on the edge of your beach chair.” Melinda Bargreen, Seattle Times.

The book of the summer…If you read only one book, read The Year of Fog.” Olivia de Lamberterie, Tele Matin, Ch 2, France. “A breathtaking novel…magnetic.” Elle France. “The gripping story of the search for a missing child.” Radio France. One of the “great successes of the summer.” Le Figaro, France “Intimate and exciting…a good, long, fascinating metaphysical novel.” Benzine Magazine, France

“An unusually imaginative novel of family, loss and hope, The Year of Fog tackles mysteries of time, memory and the human heart.” ~South China Morning Post

“Heartbreaking and riveting, this novel is beautifully written” ~Closer Magazine, UK. “Mesmerising and harrowing… Richmond has established herself as the mistress of the kind of literary mystery that reads like a fine thriller but with added insight and wisdom.” ~Daily Mail “Impossible to put down…five stars.” ~News of the World

“Deeply moving.” ~Madame Magazine, Germany. “Psychologically sophisticated suspense.” ~Freundin, Germany. “I’ve never found it so difficult not to race to the last page.” Brigitte Magazine, Germany. “Shines with a pleasing literary style, a quiet narrative and intense characters.” WDR5, Germany

“Richmond masterfully conjures feelings of love and loss.” Paisajes, Spain. “Intriguing.” Que Leer, Spain.

“With sensitivity, Michelle Richmond examines the fragility of our own stories and the role of memory.” Lalibre, Belgium

“[The Year of Fog] manages to have both the high-velocity pace of a ripped-from-the-headlines thriller and nuanced insights into the nature of memory, love, family, and guilt…Richmond burros into the details of San Francisco’s geogaphy and neighborhoods…Like all good mysteries, The Year of Fog twists the reader’s expectations, turning some of what we think we know about missing child cases on its head and providing a surprising and satisfying ending that manages to retain the complexity of real life. It is, in the end, a very memorable book.” ~Samantha Berry, Marin Magazine

“Much more than a tale of a woman looking for a child who’s lost. It’s also about the nature of passion, guilt, and most of all, memory…The Year of Fog also serves as a real-life guidebook of sorts to some of San Francisco’s lesser known neighborhoods and sites…Richmond captures the spirit of life in The City.” ~Leslie Katz, The San Francisco Examiner

“A hauntingly written novel of two people dealing with loss in their own ways… Richmond’s dream-like prose lends to an eerie atmosphere, and the solving [of] the mystery of Emma’s disappearance will leave you breathless.” Parkersburg News & Sentinel

“A child’s disappearance is at the heart of this riveting read that follows photographer, fiancée and soon-to-be-stepmother Abby Mason. Once the drama starts, prepare to race to the last page.” Hallmark Magazine

“Grab your beach bag and call your book club, The Year of Fog probably will be the best new novel of the summer…vivid environmental descriptions and psychologically sound character development. As with all good novels that border on great literature, the plot is multilayered. The Year of Fog will leave the reader both perplexed and enlightened.” Reba McMellon, The Mississippi Press

“A book I just finished this morning – reading while I was making breakfast because I absolutely could not put it down- is The Year of Fog by Michelle Richmond. Every single word in this book was worth reading. There are parts of this book that are heartbreaking, but I truly believe it deserves to be a best seller…” Tina Ristau, Des Moines Register

“Richmond artfully combines Abby’s research on memory and a sensitive depiction of her relationship with fiance Jake, resulting in a compelling, smart novel that you truly will find difficult to put down.” Birmingham Magazine

“While The Year of Fog is structured around the search for Emma, it offers a deeper meditation on the fragility of love. Which is the stronger loyalty, to child or lover? How can we relieve someone else’s despair? These sometimes unanswerable questions form the heart of Richmond’s book…The Year of Fog works well as both a literary mystery and a poignant portrait of a family ripped apart by random circumstance.” Frances Dinkelspiel, Culture Vulture

The Year of Fog [is] written so movingly that an experience that is far from universal becomes immediate and personal… the vignettes throughout create a larger poetica in which it is the reader who becomes, happily, lost.” Santa Fe Reporter

“The dilemma with Michelle Richmond’s newest novel is this: the plot is so compelling you can’t read fast enough, but the writing is so crisp and exact you want to savor every word…Nothing is sugar-coated in these pages, which makes Abby’s self-realizations all the more honest, satisfying, and true. ” Anita Garner, Alabama Writers’ Forum

“Beautifully written, with deep insights into the human soul.” Willow Glen Books, San Jose, CA

“From the very first chapter The Year of Fog grabbed me by the throat and didn’t let go. Michelle Richmond is that marvelous thing, a writer who can craft a gorgeous sentence and also create a plot so propulsive that it hurts to put the book down, even for a minute. And forget about sleeping. You won’t do that until you’re finished.” ~Ayelet Waldman, author of Love and Other Impossible Pursuits

“Michelle Richmond’s The Year of Fog is a harrowing and unputdownable novel. A moving account of one woman’s ardous journey from an ordinary day to nightmare to, ultimately, redemption. Few novelists put their characters through harder paces than Richmond. And readers have no choice but to carried away by the enduring beauty of this story.” ~Peter Orner, author of The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo & Esther Stories

“Suspenseful, richly imagined, and ultimately hopeful, The Year of Fog is a keeper. Michelle Richmond is a talent to watch.” ~Joshilyn Jackson, author of Gods in Alabama and Between, Georgia

“Michelle Richmond crafts an addictive, haunting story, filled with brainy tidbits and a local’s love of landscape.” ~Michelle Tea, author of Valencia, Rent Girl, Rose of No Man’s Land

“The Year of Fog is impossible to stop reading. Even as I savored Michelle Richmond’s rich prose and fascinating passages on photography and the nature of memory, I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. A missing child, a haunting neighborhood, a search for love, The Year of Fog has it all. Make a sandwich now: you won’t stop reading for hours.”~Amanda Eyre Ward, author of How to Be Lost and Sleep Toward Heaven

“In The Year of Fog, Michelle Richmond has performed something of a magic act. From the first few pages I was hooked. As though she knows the ride she is is taking us on is harrowing, Richmond peppers the story with mischievous humor and unexpected insights, all layered over a gorgeous love letter to San Francisco.” ~Heather Juergensen, co-writer, actor, Kissing Jessica Stein

“Michelle Richmond gives us a fascinating look into the mind of an artist. Richmond’s prose is sensual, her images fresh, her writing, lyrical and lovely.” ~Ann Cummins, author of Red Ant House and Yellowcake

German Reviews

“Michelle Richmonds “Ein einziger Blick” ist psychologisch raffinierte Hochspannung.” FREUNDIN

“Großartiges Psychogramm einer Frau, die durch eine Entführung die Lügen ihres eigenen Lebens aufarbeitet.” PETRA

“Dass aus dieser schlichten Idee ein richtig guter Roman wird, liegt daran, dass Michelle Richmond eine blendende Erzählerin ist. Mit einem literarisch ansprechenden Stil, melancholischen Tönen. Einem ruhigen, sicheren Erzählfluss und intensiven Charakteren. (…) Ein dramatischer Stoff, aus dem die Autorin eine Erzählung gestaltet hat, die bezaubert.” WDR 5: SERVICE BÜCHER + NEUGIER GENÜGT

“Ich musste mich noch nie so beherrschen, nicht vorab zum Schluss zu blättern.” Angela Wittmann, BRIGITTE

“Psychologisch raffinierte Hochspannung.” Freundin

“Es ist die sensible Beschreibung menschlicher Beziehungen und der darin verstrickten Personen, die diesen Roman zu einer aufregenden Lektüre machen.” WIENERIN

“Wenn ein Kind verschwindet, mutmaßlich entführt oder gar ermordet wird, dann lässt sich daraus ein Thriller stricken – oder ein Roman wie dieser: nicht reißerisch, sondern verträumt. Richmond findet zarte, poetische Töne, erzählt die dramatische Handlung in einer Kette subtil berührender Momente. Richmond glänzt dabei mit einem literarisch ansprechenden Stil, einem ruhigen, sicheren Erzählfluss und intensiven Charakteren.” WDR5

French Reviews:

“Un magnifique livre qui nous entraîne dans une atmosphère pesante, le brouillard dominant accroissant cette sensation.” Aurélie Paschal, Journal despros

“Celle-ci, rongée par le remord et la culpabilité, mais armée de l’énergie du désespoir, consacre tout son temps, son instinct et sa mémoire à cette quête. Un livre très bien écrit…” Le livre du jour, Radio France

“Admirablement et adroitement porté par une écriture tour à tour descriptive, photographique et réflexive qui prend parfois la forme d’une méditation intérieure, L’Année brouillard est dépouillé de tout sentimentalisme ; il rivalise au contraire de lucidité, et de profondeur dans l’exploration anatomique de l’ensemble des conséquences d’une disparition d’enfant.” Chez Clarabel

“L’année brouillard est l’histoire haletante de la recherche d’Emma par la police d’abord, puis par Jake et Abby ensemble, enfin, au bout d’environ trois cents jours alors que son père abattu et découragé ne croit plus aux chances de retrouver sa petite fille, par Abby seule. Elle consacre tout son temps, son instinct et sa mémoire à cette quête. Obsédée par l’importance de retrouver le souvenir du moindre détail, du moindre événement, du moindre personnage présent ce jour funeste sur la plage, elle mène l’enquête à sa façon. Armée de l’énergie du désespoir et de l’angoisse, de sa culpabilité à conjurer et de la soif de se forger une image acceptable d’elle-même, mais délaissée car accusée en silence par Jake, elle mettra tout en œuvre pour retrouver les ravisseurs d’Emma. Y parviendra-t-elle ?” Arts & Livres

Golden State

Library Journal, starred review, 11/01/2013

“Remembering a quote from Richmond’s protagonist is probably the best way to approach her intricate, unusual story. Julie Merrill must focus and “recalibrate her world.” And so must the reader of this amazing, turbulent novel woven of disparate threads. .. Nearly every feature of this mesmerizing novel is provocative, as Richmond explores the fragmented, hopeful lives of complex characters. This is gripping, multilayered must-read fiction from the best-selling author of The Year of Fog (which was an LJ Best Book of 2007).”—Andrea Tarr, Corona P.L., CA

Booklist, starred review, 12/01/2014

“Mesmerizing and intricate, Richmond’s dissection of California on the violent brink of secession from the nation provides the backdrop for her deeper inspection of the uneasy, fragile relationship between siblings..All of these seemingly random situations are tied together during a single day with breathtaking grace by Richmond in an understated yet riveting read…” –Julie Trevayan

“A stirring look at the ties that bind husband-wife, mother-child and even sisters, and what happens when they’re torn asunder. Set in a San Francisco chafing with unrest both political and personal, the world Richmond creates is exquisitely charged with regret and hope.” –Darcy Jacobs, Family Circle, Jan. 2014

“Richmond takes readers through a bittersweet, heartwarming tale of a woman on the cusp of life-changing events in both her personal and professional lives…he reader is carried away by this action-packed, poignant story, making this a tale that will live in the hearts of the reader once the last page is read.” Romantic Times, Feb. 2014

“The author, who has four previous novels and a book of short stories to her credit, does many things well. In fact, she does all things well, from plot to setting (San Francisco makes it easier, though) to, above all, characterization…” John Greenya for The Washington Times, May 23, 2014

No One You Know

“Heartbreaking and compelling…Richmond gracefully weaves in fascinating background material on the coffee culture and the field of mathematics as she thoughtfully explores family dynamics, the ripple effects of tragedy, and the importance of the stories we tell. Combine all that with perfect pacing and depth of insight, and you have a thoroughly riveting literary thriller.” Joanne Wilkinson, Booklist, Starred Review“Richmond returns to San Francisco for another enjoyable blend of mystery and domestic fiction…Vivid descriptions and loving explanations of the city and intelligent forays into the sciences of coffee and mathematics enhance Richmond’s quietly captivating novel.” Publishers Weekly

“Michelle Richmond follows her compulsively readable fiction debut, The Year of Fog, with an equally addictive encore. Richmond takes a singular approach in No One You Know. The story is propelled by the mystery surrounding Lila’s death, the who- done-it and why. But the central narrative is more focused on emotional truths than on solving a crime.” Denver Post

“Thoughtful, involving, intricately constructed, and well written…Michelle Richmond never strikes a false note in No One You Know. It’s an intelligent, emotionally convincing tale about a family tragedy and the process of storytelling.” Boston Globe

“As much Borgesian mystery as it is the story of a complex relationship between a woman and her sibling.” Jeff Vandemeer, Amazon Editors Blog

“As complex and beautiful as a mathematical proof, this gripping, thought-provoking novel will keep you thinking long after the last page has been turned.” Darcy Jacobs, Family Circle

“An absorbing read made urgent by needing to know ‘whodunit’. But it is much more than that, being a tale of family, loss, love and misused trust. A clever, unusual read.” Sarah Broadhurst for The Bookseller, Britain, June 2009 debut of the month

“An excellent, emotionally intelligent literary mystery.” London Daily Mail, Ultimate Holiday Reading List

“Michelle Richmond strikes the perfect balance of rural past and urban present in her fiction. As a native of Alabama (and now a San Francisco diehard), she takes a unique approach to her characters, at once delicate and deliberate, that’s full of city sensibilities and venturous diction. No One You Know, Richmond’s third novel, is a family saga set against the backdrop of San Francisco’s café culture and intelligentsia.” Laureen Mahler for Flavorpill

“NYT bestselling author Michelle Richmond is a bit of a chimera: her novels certainly have mainstream, commercial appeal but there’s often a dark core to them, along with influences that include Italo Calvino and Paul Auster. This gives them a lot more depth than the breezy covers might suggest. Her latest, No One You Know, is as much Borgesian mystery as it is the story of a complex relationship between a woman and her sibling.” Jeff VanderMeer (City of Saints and Madmen) for Amazon Editors’ Blog

“Richmond’s The Year of Fog was a bestseller, and her follow-up, a tale of love, loss and betrayal, is even more compulsively readable…A mesmerizer that delves into how little we sometimes know about the ones we love.” Caroline Leavitt for Dame Magazine

“This novel may seem at first to be genre fiction, but it is in fact literary fiction, the best sort. Richmond explores the devastating effects of grief and survivor guilt. She demonstrates how little, really, we know about even the people closest to us. ” Don Noble for Alabama Public Radio

“This novel hits all the right buttons—incredible olfactory descriptions of coffee, a trustworthy narrator, great villain, suspenseful plot, fear of math… guard it carefully. If you leave it lying around, someone will pick it up, start reading, and never put it down until the end.” Anita Garner for Alabama Writers’ Forum

“Richmond’ novels have a commercial mainstream appeal with literary depth…The authenticity and psychological accessibility of Richmond’s characters propels the plot, keeping the reader hooked to the last page.” Reba McMellon for The Mississippi Press

Dream of the Blue Room


Golden State is a book that deftly combines delicate matters of the heart with a heart-thumping hostage situation in the middle of a state and national crisis.  The creative synergy isn’t so much about the suspense of one moment as it is about the life-changing events that can erupt without warning and change everything thought to be matter-of-fact.  Life has no preparation manual, no guide to follow when there is disruption.  What happens next is entirely up to those involved.  Highly recommended to all. – See more at:
Golden State is a book that deftly combines delicate matters of the heart with a heart-thumping hostage situation in the middle of a state and national crisis.  The creative synergy isn’t so much about the suspense of one moment as it is about the life-changing events that can erupt without warning and change everything thought to be matter-of-fact.  Life has no preparation manual, no guide to follow when there is disruption.  What happens next is entirely up to those involved.  Highly recommended to all. – See more at:

Golden State is a book that deftly combines delicate matters of the heart with a heart-thumping hostage situation in the middle of a state and national crisis.  The creative synergy isn’t so much about the suspense of one moment as it is about the life-changing events that can erupt without warning and change everything thought to be matter-of-fact.  Life has no preparation manual, no guide to follow when there is disruption.  What happens next is entirely up to those involved.  Highly recommended to all. – See more at:

“A dreamy, haunting work with a deeply personal feel. Any time a work of fiction raises our sights to higher truts, as this one does, the writer has done her job.” Florida Sun-Sentinel

“Some childhood relationships are so fulfilling they shape our lives and leave us wondering why they didn’t last longer. Richmond captures, explores, and intertwines these bonds so elegantly, you might even think the relationships are your own.” USA Today

“Intelligent, original, complex.” The San Francisco Chronicle

“A complex and nimbly fashioned first novel.” Kirkus Reviews

“The book is finely crafted and compelling, and its emotions resonate true and clear.” Booklist

“With the slow build-up of a mystery, the exquisite pain of a coming-of-age novel, the masterful images of a travel writer, and a darkness that is true to the Southern Gothic, Dream of a Blue Room is a work of wonderfully chimeric form. ” Joanna Pearson, Small Spiral Notebook


“The stories in Michelle Richmond’s first collection spin artfully off the life of a single character…smart and adept.” The New York Times Book Review

“This collection of brief sketches alternating with longer fictions has a novel’s heft, as characters who are just names in one story emerge to take center stage in another. These women’s lives are shaped by fate and by place, forces hauntingly evoked by this talented young writer.” ~The Boston Globe

“Richmond’s writing is perceptive and heartfelt, her subjects at once edgy and familiar. This is a winning debut.” Publishers Weekly

“Remember this name: Michelle Richmond.” The San Francisco Chronicle




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