The Lost Art of Sinking

Naomi Booth


Winner of Saboteur Award for Best Novella 2016
Shortlisted for MMU Novella Award 2014

Our Price £12.99

RRP £12.99




Some call it the Fainting Game, others Indian Headrush – but it’s all the rage amongst the girls of Class 2B. “It makes you go all rushy. You feel like you’re falling into a dream.”

This is the story of Esther, who lives in the Pennines with her father. Esther is obsessed with experimenting with different ways to pass out: from snorting Daz powder at school to attempted autoasphyxiation in a serviced apartment in north London. But what happens when you take something too far? And what has Esther’s mother, a beautiful dancer wasting away in her bedroom, to do with it all?

The Lost Art of Sinking is a dark comedy about losing yourself. Sensual, funny and exquisitely written, this bold novella introduces a fresh new literary voice in Naomi Booth.



Naomi Booth’s lyrical and witty novella, The Lost Art of Sinking, could be the next big thing… Beautifully written with bursts of crisp poetic monologue and deadpan humour, the novella shows unusual talent. Naomi Booth is a name to watch.


A short, absorbing read about losing yourself that packs a compelling punch.


A beautiful and haunting journey … exquisitely written, evoking, sensual and all encompassing – once I started to read I didn’t stop.

Arabella Fawley, Jade the Obscure

Utterly fantastic!

Anna Roberts, Books for the Trees

Rich, layered and so utterly stunning.

Eleanor Baggley, Lit Nerd

Breathtakingly poetic … This is a book to which I will return over the years.

The Bookish Snob

A complex, deeply psychological novella.

Bethany W Pope, Sabotage



Naomi Booth’s top 10 literary swoons The Guardian

Swoon: the cultural history of an ecstatic phenomenon Prospect Magazine

Giddy heights of research translate into fiction: Times Higher Education

Naomi Booth talks to Ian McMillan The Verb, BBC Radio 3


Praise for The Lost Art of Sinking

Naomi Booth’s The Lost Art of Sinking is beautifully written, funny, mischievous and touching. A deeply engaging dramatisation of the strange ‘art’ of fainting, swooning, passing out, it also has what very few contemporary works of fiction have – an arresting, self-assured and compelling narrative voice.

Nicholas Royle

A mysterious and otherworldly piece of writing – one that contains both the lavishly gothic and the familiar and domestic.

Jenn Ashworth

The Lost Art of Sinking

Cover design by Ben Anslow

ISBN 9781908058294
Published 1 June 2015
Pages 144
RRP £12.99

Filed under Award-nominated, Books, Fiction, Naomi Booth


beautifully written, funny, mischievous and touching

Nicholas Royle

About the author

Naomi Booth

Naomi Booth grew up in West Yorkshire. She read English at the University of Cambridge and completed a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing at the University of Sussex. Her short fiction has been published as part of Myriad Editions’ Quick Fictions series. Her critical work has been published in New Formations and Textual Practice, and she is currently working on a monograph about swooning. Naomi lives in York and is a Lecturer in Literature and Creative Writing at York St John University.