“Cheryl is both devious and complicated… Her interloper perspective allows for bold reflections—knowing that she ‘could have ended up somewhere where people had good reason to be unhappy.'”

–  The New Yorker

The Invaders is easily one of the best novels of 2015.”

– Jason Diamond, Electric Literature

John Cheever and John Updike were once the rulers of American suburban fiction; in Bullet Park, The Swimmer and Couples they outlined a portrait of the middlebrow milquetoast within the post-60s New Left. Waclawiak writes of the suburban rituals of status and boredom with the same acuity for detail as those writers, but the domestic setting she creates around Cheryl and Teddy is a thoroughly post-millennial world, the kind prophesied by Jean Baudrillard when he quipped, ‘What do we do after the orgy?'”

– Erik Morse, The GuardianA Sad Ballad of Suburbia

“With deft humor and insight, Waclawiak reveals her characters’ long-hidden vulnerabilities. The Invaders asks us to contemplate what happens to people’s hearts when their lives are lived on the surface. What happens to love? Cheryl asks. ‘How could it have just floated away?'”

– René Steinke, O, The Oprah Magazine – 17 Books to Get Lost in This August

“The second novel from Karolina Waclawiak ought to be sold with coconut oil and sunglasses. A perfect, and perfectly dark, beach read told with L.A.-noir style but set in tony country-club Connecticut, The Invaders follows a wealthy family as it falls apart over the course of a stormy summer.”

 Nicole Jones, Vanity Fair, What Does an American Book Look Like

“Waclawiak has written an elegant book about the difficulty of casting off who you’ve been and who you’ve become. Cheryl and Teddy are easily engrossing characters forced to decide if they can handle a life that honors this truth, or if they’ll let the sea wash it all away.”

– Ashley Ford, Slate Book Review, Petty Brutality

“With its spot-on characterizations, droll dialogue, and staccato pacing, Waclawiak’s dark satire is a trenchant indictment of the country club set tempered by the compassionately rendered portraits of two of its not entirely unwitting victims.”


“The Invaders presents a welcome return to the harsher tone of classics like The Stepford Wives or The Graduate. The message of this book is a quiet one, but it’s timely and one we should pay attention to: you pay a price for privilege, says The Invaders, and sometimes that price is much higher than you expect.”

LitReactor, Bookshots

“The Invaders is a masterful work of literary fiction with the pulse of a thriller and an ending that’s right out of a pulp novel: lyrical yet unstintingly unsentimental and as pitiless as a sunburn on a cloudy day. ”

– Jim Ruland, San Diego City Beat

“The Invaders‘ surreal conclusion reminds readers that the only way to become wholly part of nature is to die. These are my favorite kind of beach reads, more messy ambiguity than Mai Tais.”

The Toast – Actual Beach Reads: Talk and The Invaders

“Cheryl and Teddy’s strong voices and emotional turmoil will stay with you long after you finish the book.”

– Emily Hollingsworth,

“A bored housewife in a gated community has to deal with her husband’s drug-addled son from his first marriage in Waclawiak’s hotly anticipated second novel. Her first, How To Get Into The Twin Palms, was a mini-masterpiece of atmosphere and mood; a new book is a cause for celebration.”

– Emily Gould, PaperMag – YOUR MUST-READ BOOKS OF 2015

“Readers with a beef about representations of race and class in literature would do well to exercise patience during the opening chapter of Karolina Waclawiak’s novel The Invaders. After all, the novel’s setting of Little Neck Cove, Connecticut — its old Congregational church, the town green at its center, its tasteful shops on Main Street — gives us no hint of the savage evisceration of white privilege that follows.”

– Jenna Leigh Evans, Electric Literature – On The Outside Looking In

“A dark and hilarious takedown of the Connecticut country club scene in all its boozy, bitter glory. Such a delicious read.”

– Jami Attenberg, Brooklyn Based – Plot a Perfect Summer of Reading

“I feel like often the term “summer reads” suggests something light, but I’m ready for something dark, twisted, and I know Karolina will deliver.”

– Steph Opitz, Tribeza – Austin Literary Stars Dish on Favorite Outdoor Reading Spots and Books for Summer



Most overlooked book of the year: How to Get Into the Twin Palms by Karolina Waclawiak.
– Salon Best of 2012, What to Read Award Winners

“Just as Anya reinvents herself, Waclawiak’s novel (her first) reinvents the immigration story…At its most illuminating, “How to Get Into the Twin Palms” movingly portrays a protagonist intent on both creating and destroying herself, on burning brightly even as she goes up in smoke.”
New York Times Book Review, Editor’s Choice

“If Sofia Coppola hadn’t already made Somewhere in 2010, then Waclawiak’s novel could provide excellent material for a Coppola take on California.”

– Contenders Magazine

“Anya’s story strikes with the creeping suddenness of a brush fire.”

– Starred Review, Publisher’s Weekly

“The novel is beautifully written and so suffused with loneliness it makes you ache. Not only is How to Get into the Twin Palms about the overwhelming state that is displacement, it’s about what happens when loneliness becomes unbearable. Waclawiak writes through these tensions so elegantly, so tenderly, that How to Get Into the Twin Palms is, by far, one of my favorite books this year.”
– Roxane Gay, The Rumpus

“Waclawiak writes about loneliness, isolation, and determination in a refreshing and quirky way.”
– Michele Filgate, New York Magazine

“Anya gives a desperate and often deeply comic voice to the members of the so-called ‘1.5 generation,’ who immigrated to the US as children, and her weird, bleak world is impossible to forget.”

– Columbia Magazine

“Waclawiak’s mix of sad, dark humor is compelling and creates an other-ness that’s hard to shake. In the end, taking the bus along with Anya–now car-less–we feel, like our narrator, a little singed and covered in ash. But heck, maybe that’s not a bad way to start over?”
– Larissa Zimberoff, The Rumpus

“The immigrant novel is a hallowed literary tradition, but Believer deputy editor Waclawiak’s fresh and bizarre reboot makes us want to read a million more.”
– Emily Temple, Flavorwire’s 10 New Must Reads for July

“Masked by scenes of schmancy nightlife is a story about an immigrant wanting to belong.”
– Marie Claire’s favorite reads, Marie Claire

“Clever and sometimes sad, Waclawiak’s book turns the traditional immigrant novel on its head, or maybe turns it inside out, or maybe just dyes its hair a nice shade of “Black Stilettos,” turning its ears black in the process.”
– 10 Great Novels About the Immigrant Experience, Flavorpill

“Sex-crazed, surreal, dreamy, violent, escapist, and always searching for some kind of truth. The book makes me think of questions I ask myself all the time.”
– Sara Finnerty, HTML Giant