Winner of the Desmond Elliott Prize 2015.
Seventeen-year old Peggy has recently returned home, initially we know not from where. Her father is dead, her mother has destroyed all evidence of him from their home. Peggy has a nine-year old brother who she has only just met. Slowly we are drip-fed an extraordinary tale of madness and survival. Young eight-year old Peggy spent an idyllic summer living rough with her father, learning survival skills. He then takes her on a trek across Europe to a deserted wooden hut where they turn native for he believes the world has ended and he and Peggy the only people left alive. How he dies and she eventually gets home is the heart of this terrific tale. It is an unusual, atmospheric, alarming, horrifying tale of madness and survival. Highly recommended.
March 2015 Debut of the Month.
1976: Peggy Hillcoat is eight. She spends her summer camping with her father, playing her beloved record of The Railway Children and listening to her mother's grand piano, but her pretty life is about to change. Her survivalist father, who has been stockpiling provisions for the end which is surely coming soon, takes her from London to a cabin in a remote European forest. There he tells Peggy the rest of the world has disappeared. Her life is reduced to a piano which makes music but no sound, a forest where all that grows is a means of survival. And a tiny wooden hut that is Everything.
In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can read the full reviews here.
‘I tore through it, found it utterly gripping and loved its hypnotic atmosphere. The beauty and pleasures of the natural world pitted against the unravelling horrors of isolation and insanity worked brilliantly’ Esther Freud
‘Excellent…I loved the combination of Peggy/Punzel’s absolutely authentic child’s precision for detail and her day-to-day matter-of-factness (often very funny) with the strangeness of the world she inhabited…very powerfully imagined... absolutely compelling’ Morag Joss (author of The Night Following)
Publication date: 26/02/2015
Publisher: Fig Tree an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd
|Publication date:||26th February 2015|
|Publisher:||Fig Tree an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd|
|Genres:||Reader Reviewed Books, Debuts of the Month, eBook Favourites, Family Drama, Literary Fiction, Reading Groups,|
Claire Fuller lives in Winchester. She is a director of a marketing agency specializing in marketing communications. She is also an artist and sculptor and has had several short stories published. Our Endless Numbered Days is her first novel. Author photo © Adrian HarveyMore About Claire Fuller