Bury Me Deep

Written by Megan Abbott


Phoenix, Arizona, in 1931 is a combination of a dusty Wild West town and a sanatorium for tuberculosis patients. Marion Seeley, the naïve wife of a morphine-addicted doctor, is literally thrown into this mix, as her husband abandons her in Phoenix on his way to Mexico. Lonely and afraid, Marion meets the energetic red-headed Louise Mercer and her sickly roommate Ginny, and is drawn into the wild, reckless lifestyle of these two women who have a past but no future.

Gin, music, and men become the order of the day (and night); Marion retains her innocence for quite some time, outwardly observing the behavior of her friends and the seemingly-respectable men of the town, but not succumbing to their invitations to partake. Until she meets Joe Lanigan, that is: tall, handsome, and powerful, Joe sweeps Marion off her feet and away from her moral-ridden upbringing; suddenly she is not just in love, but also in lust, and ready to do anything for this dangerous man who has a finger in all the businesses in Phoenix. Marion’s inability to see the truth about her friends and lover doesn’t change even when she becomes the victim of their plotting and fickleness. A fight, some shouting, a gun, and Marion’s life changes forever.

The last third of the novel is a wonderfully insightful description of Marion’s journey to reality, the truth, and inner strength, which Abbott skillfully contrasts with matter-of-fact details of murder and missing bodies. Based on a true story, Abbott’s gruesome yet riveting tale explores the deeper, darker recesses of human actions and desires while never closing the door on redemption.