LoveReading

Becoming a member of the LoveReading community is free.

No catches, no fine print just unadulterated book loving, with your favourite books saved to your own digital bookshelf.

New members get entered into our monthly draw to win £100 to spend in your local bookshop Plus lots lots more…

Find out more

The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times

by Xan Brooks

eBooks of the Month Historical Fiction Modern and Classic Literary Fiction

LoveReading View on The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times

Longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize 2018 | Shortlisted for the Costa Book Awards 2017, First Novel Award

May 2017 Debut of the Month.

This magnetic debut evokes the social and emotional landscapes of interwar England with an abundance of originality. With the country battered and drained by the Great War, orphan Lucy Marsh finds herself in an extraordinary place, and in the company of even more extraordinary people, when an old army truck trundles her to woods on the edge of London. Here Lucy feels that anything could happen: “She might shake hands with a ghost or dance alongside a lion or spoon trifle into the mouth of a storybook dwarf”. But what Lucy really encounters is every bit as remarkable as her imaginings, for it’s here that she meets the “funny men”, four former soldiers disfigured by war, each named after one of Dorothy’s Emerald City-bound cohorts.

The novel is a rich tapestry that interweaves the social fabric of interwar England with fairy tale touches. Lucy comes to feel that “the world is confusing, but the forest is not”, poignantly conveying the strangeness of the period. The author has a fabulously visual style, and I loved the ensemble of characters - some haunted, some scarred, all of them nimbly conjured by a debut author with considerable talent.

The Costa Judges say: ‘A perfectly-paced, unsettling yet strangely uplifting tale about fractured lives and broken people.’

Joanne Owen

The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times Synopsis

New Faces of Fiction 2017, Observer Observer Fiction to look out for in 2017 The Irish Times What To Look Out for in 2017 from Independent Publishers Jen Campbell's 'Most Anticipated Books of 2017' Jean Bookish Thoughts 'Most Anticipated Releases of 2017' A dark social-realist fairytale, spotlighting the shadowy underside of 1920s England Summer 1923: the modern world. Orphaned Lucy Marsh climbs into the back of an old army truck and is whisked off to the woods north of London - a land haunted by the past, where lost souls and monsters conceal themselves in the trees. In a sunlit clearing she meets the 'funny men', a quartet of disfigured ex-soldiers named after Dorothy's companions in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Here are the loved and the damaged, dark forests and darker histories, and the ever-present risk of discovery and violent retribution. Xan Brooks' stunning debut is heartbreaking, disturbing and redemptive.

MEGA GIVEAWAY! Win a year's worth of reading with our 2019 Star Books!

MEGA GIVEAWAY! Win a year's worth of reading with our 2019 Star Books!

Closing date: 06/12/2019

WE LOVE BOOKS! LoveReading is the UK’s leading book recommendation website. Our mission is to promote a love of books and reading to all by offering the tools, advice and information needed to help our members and browsers to find their next favourite book. We have a panel of editorial experts that select books right across the genres and read the latest releases to keep you fully updated. Their reviews and recommendations make it easy for you to choose the perfect book to read next. Search by author, genre or book title to find the next book for you - and once you are a member, you can sign up to receive regular newsletters and save all the books you want to read or have read to your own digital bookshelf. Membership of the site is free and delivers a helpful range of unique online tools, including 10-15 page opening extracts and listening to samples of audiobooks from specially selected titles. You can also subscribe to our personalised newsletters to help you keep on top of all the new releases while having recommendations tailored just for you. Our Star Books are a selection of our personal favourites from the books we've read each year. The ones that have really stood out from the crowd for us. We always say if you're only going to buy a few books this year, take a look at our Star Books selection. We have a HUGE giveaway for you to really end your year on a high. We're giving you the opportunity to win all the books selected as Star Books this year! That's around 40 books that you can keep for yourself, share with friends and family or give as Christmas gifts. A year's worth of reading and some of our favourite books published this year, for you, for free! What are you waiting for? This draw is open only for UK residents currently in the UK and is free to enter, multiple entries from the same email address will only be counted once. The draw closes on 6th December 2019. The winners will be notified as soon as possible.

Enter Now

The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times Press Reviews

'A fairytale wrapped within a historical novel, it's as quixotic and dreamlike as Ishiguro's The Buried Giant. -- Alex Preston, author of In Love and War

'Thrilling, disturbing and somehow very funny ... a bold, ambitious, weird novel with a lot of foliage to get lost in' -- Hannah Jane Parkinson Observer

If you loved this, you might like these...

Dear Edward
Saving Missy
Don't Look At Me Like That
The God Child

All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781784630935
Publication date: 15/04/2017
Publisher: Salt Publishing
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781784630935
Publication date: 15th April 2017
Author: Xan Brooks
Publisher: Salt Publishing
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 400 pages
Genres: eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction,
Categories: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),

About Xan Brooks

Xan Brooks is an award-winning writer, editor and broadcaster. He spent his rude youth as part of the founding editorial team of the Big Issue magazine and his respectable middle period as an associate editor at the Guardian, specialising in film. The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times is his first novel.

More About Xan Brooks

Share this book