An idyllic, old farmhouse in France is the background to a gripping story suffused with tension.
Two Oxford historians, Johnny and Sarah Thomson, take a sabbatical with their three small and lively girls in a remote and beautiful old farmhouse in the hills of Languedoc. But the farmhouse has its own histories, rather more fraught and alive than those the Thomsons are used to dealing with on the page.
As the illusion of Eden retreats, the Thomsons start to feel the vulnerability of being aliens in this unpredictable wildness. While Sarah frets about the danger of the swimming pool and the night-time visits of well-tusked boars, Johnny is more concerned by the locals — particularly Jean-Luc, the gardener. Is his taste for hammering tiny nails into dolls, collecting arcane rubbish, and secretly photographing Sarah, more than a harmless pastime? And how should they react to his eager befriending of their girls?
The novel, narrated from several points of view (most importantly from Jean-Luc’s), is about being among strangers, and being a stranger oneself. Writing, as always, with linguistic élan, imaginative flair, and an alert ear for dialogue, Adam Thorpe allows the comic to occasionally seep through, before returning us to the terrifying mysteries that feed at the heart of this thrilling novel.
From the Hardcover edition.
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
Adam Thorpe’s first novel, Ulverton, was published in 1992. Since then he has written six other novels — most recently, Between Each Breath, two collections of stories and four books of poetry. He lives in France with his wife and family.
From the Hardcover edition.
"Superior novel...wincingly precise in his imagery and technically adept... An electric and darkly gleeful read" * Daily Mail * "An immensely clever, tragicomic novel...a rich meditation on past and present colonial politics... What resonates for me is what I greatly admire in all Thorpe's work: the complex depth, and the texture and poetry of his storytelling language" * Financial Times * "An intimate depiction of family life... Vivid and luminous" * Independent on Sunday * "Because this is Adam Thorpe, there are only two things you know for certain: that the writing will be gorgeous, silky-smooth; and that the plot will be entirely original, defying categorisation...enjoy" * Sunday Telegraph * "An intricate fiction which reminds us gently that war wrecks lives in ways too tangled to anticipate" * Times Literary Supplement *
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Vintage, 2009. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 432 pages. 7.76x5.08x1.02 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk0099503654
Book Description Vintage Books, 2009. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110099503654