In our first book review in June, we are excited to look back on Katharine Coldiron’s novel, Ceremonials, published in February 2020 from Kernpunkt Press. Inspired by the Florence + The Machine album, “[at] its core,” writes reviewer Hannah VanDuinen, “Ceremonials is a comprehensive meditation on the grief that stems from the loss of a loved one.”
Katharine Coldiron’s Ceremonials is a novel inspired by the Florence + The Machine album by the same name. I knew that going in, but until I dove into its pages, I had no idea what to expect—would it be readable? Would it be derivative? Would it rely too heavily on Florence Welch’s words?
Thankfully, the novel is wonderfully readable and unique. The prose itself is highly lyrical in nature, so it does justice to the album even without directly quoting the songs. Personally, I know a lot of Florence + The Machine music well, but I don’t know this album as well as others, so I’m sure there are references in the text that went over my head. However, I didn’t feel like I was missing out—the novel stands firmly on its own.