In this remarkable debut novel, Katherine Bucknell compellingly captures the tragedy of a disintegrating marriage. She brilliantly evokes a world glittering with wealth and social prestige yet stalked by desolation.
David is an American investment banker working in London; Elizabeth, his wife, is a woman of peerless beauty and refinement. They have two children; their marriage seems perfect. But one summer evening, David finds himself alone in their empty Belgravia mansion. Elizabeth has abandoned him and fled to Virginia. David receives a phonecall from a long-lost friend, and so begins a transatlantic tale about friendship, marriage and betrayal that is filled with unexpected reversals.
Canarino is a portrait of intimate relationships set in a world of privilege and achievement. Its characters possess personal gifts in dazzling abundance, yet their appetites to succeed, to be exceptional, tempt them to risk everything. How can we recognise love and friendship? Which bonds last longest? What is the cost of seeking perfection?
Beneath the novel’s polished surface lie haunting psychological depths. Canarino is a novel that lingers in the mind, long after the final page has been turned.
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‘In Elizabeth Judd, Katherine Bucknell's first novel creates a tyrannical anti-heroine comparable to Somerville and Ross' malevolent Charlotte Mullen in The Real Charlotte … The twisting machinations of this she-devil are recounted with a sharp irony that stings like a splash of lemon juice on a cut finger.’ Sunday Times
'A remarkably vigorous and subtle first novel: it is written with commanding authority and is impressively accomplished. The plotting is bold and alluring. The characters are vividly realised, forensically examined … beautifully observed. The writing throughout is spare and punctilious.' Independent
'A memorable debut' Observer
'An artistic triumph' Sunday Telegraph
'An impressively structured novel.' Spectator
'A sharp, pacily written examination of a marriage in slow motion.' Time Out
‘The best first novel I’ve read this year … notable for its skilful design and exceptionally good prose’ Frank Kermode, TLS
'Divorce, money, sexy men and classy prose. Chick lit for clever girls.' Style Magazine, Sunday TimesAbout the Author:
Katherine Bucknell was born in Saigon and grew up in Washington, D.C. She is a literary scholar and the editor of ‘Juvenilia: Poems 1922-1928’ by W.H. Auden and of ‘Diaries Volume One, 1939-1960’ and ‘Lost Years: A Memoir 1945-1951’ both by Christopher Isherwood. Her novels are ‘Canarino’, ‘Leninsky Prospekt’, and ‘What You Will’. She lives in London with her husband and their three children.
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Book Description HarperPerennial, 2005. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0007178662