Amanda Jayatissa loves to read disturbing books with shocking plot twists, so it seemed logical to her that she should attempt to write disturbing books with shocking plot twists.
She is one of the first Sri Lankan women to secure an international book contract.
Her first traditionally published novel, MY SWEET GIRL, won Best Debut Novel at the International Thriller Writers Awards in 2022.
Her second novel, YOU'RE INVITED, was selected as a Book of The Month pick in July 2022 and was featured on The Today Show.
She grew up in Sri Lanka and has lived in the California bay area and British countryside, before relocating back to her sunny island, where she lives with her husband and two Tasmanian-devil-reincarnate huskies.
Available Feb 20th 2024
Inspired by Sri Lankan folklore, and recalling horror classics like Carrie and The Exorcist, award-winning author Amanda Jayatissa turns her feverish, Gothic-tinged talents to late 19th century Sri Lanka where the daughter of a traditional demon-priest—relentlessly bullied by peers and accused of witchcraft herself—tries to solve the mysterious attacks that have been terrorizing her coastal village.
Being the daughter of the village Capuwa, or demon-priest, Amara is used to keeping mostly to herself. Influenced by the new religious practices brought in by the British Colonizers, the villagers who once respected her father’s craft have turned on the family. Yet, they all still seem to call on him whenever supernatural disturbances arise.
Now someone—or something—is viciously seizing upon men in the jungle. But instead of enlisting Amara’s father’s help, the villages have accused him of carrying out the attacks himself.
As she tries to clear her father’s name, Amara finds herself haunted by dreams that eerily predict the dark forces on her island. And she can’t shake the feeling that it’s all connected to the night she was recovering from a strange illness, and woke up, scared and confused, to hear her mother’s frantic cries: No one can find out what happened.
Lush and otherworldly, Island Witch is a deliciously creepy and darkly feminist tale about the horrors of moral panic, the violent space between girlhood and adulthood, and what happens when female rage is finally unleashed.