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Last Boat Home by Dea Brovig

Last Boat Home

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Else is a quiet, diligent Norwegian girl who becomes a confident mother/grandmother. The story starts with Else aged 17 giving birth, jumps 34 years to her present life and then swings back to the events leading up to conception. The chapters flow back and forth building a tragic picture of a traumatic childhood, beautifully portrayed. We have a brutal father, a judgemental pastor and a growing relationship with a farm boy. Then a circus comes to town and Else sees her escape. I’m not telling you if she does or not for you have to read this dramatic tale.


Last Boat Home by Dea Brovig

Explosive, dark and tender, The Last Boat Home is a devastating novel about sacrifice, survival and a mother's love. If you loved The Light Between Oceans or The Snow Child, this is for you. On the wind-swept southern coast of Norway, sixteen-year-old Else is out on the icy sea, dragging her oars through the waves while, above her, storm clouds are gathering. Surrounded by mountains, snow and white-capped water, she looks across the fjord and dreams of another life, of escape and faraway lands. Back on shore, her father sits alone in his boathouse with a jar of homebrew. In the Best Room, her mother covers her bruises and seeks solace in prayer. Each tries to hide the truth from this isolated, God-fearing community they call home. Until one night changes everything. More than thirty years later, the return of an old friend forces Else to relive the events that marked the end of her childhood. Explosive, dark and tender, The Last Boat Home is a devastating novel about sacrifice, survival and a mother's love.


A finely-written debut, as eloquent about mothers and daughters as it is about men and women, with an immediacy to the writing that makes both time - then and now - and place - a small Norwegian town - fully realised and tangibly present. -- Stella Duffy

The evocation of place is wonderful; the writing fresh, the storytelling assured. Dea Brovig vividly conjures up this Norwegian community and its terrible secrets and repressions. -- Jill Dawson author of The Great Lover and Lucky Bunny

About the Author

Dea Brovig moved to the UK from Norway at the age of 17. After graduating from Leeds University, she worked in publishing in London for eight years. She graduated from UEA's Creative Writing MA in 2009. The Last Boat Home is her first novel.

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Book Info

Publication date

30th November 1999


Dea Brovig

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Family Drama
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