Valerie Martin is the author of ten novels, including The Ghost of the Mary Celeste, The Confessions of Edward Day, Trespass, Mary Reilly, Italian Fever, and Property; three collections of short fiction; and a biography of Saint Francis of Assisi, titled Salvation. She has been awarded grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, as well as the Kafka Prize and Britain’s Orange Prize. Sea Lovers: Selected Stories (Nan A. Talese) is her latest collection of short fiction. The twelve stories in this collection showcase Martin’s enviable control, precision, and grace and are organized around her three fictional obsessions—the natural world, the artistic sphere, and stunning transformations. Exploring themes of obsession, justice, passion, and duplicity, these drolly macabre stories buzz with tension.