The Unravelling

by Polly Crosby

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LoveReading Expert Review of The Unravelling

An eerie tang of longing hovers over this expressive and moving novel set on a wild island off of the English coast.

This gloriously bittersweet and intensely dark novel swims into the very depths of emotion and takes you with it. Tartelin’s new job on near deserted island Dohhalund off the East Anglian coast tests her own grief and the secrets of her employers past. Polly Crosby’s debut novel was the stunning LoveReading Star Book The Illustrated Child. This, her second novel more than lived up to my high expectations, Polly Crosby is most definitely an author to watch. She isn't afraid to slice open, peel back and expose layers of pain, and she does so in the most beautifully eloquent way. I advise taking your time with this novel, step into and soak up the words. A hushed quiet descends, and yet the island, the tone, the words, create a powerful and vivid reality. A sense of unease kept me company as I read, alongside that unease something else embraced me in welcome as I settled in and explored with Tartelin. The two time frames shimmered and almost flexed into one as I read. The story hides, remaining watchful and patient before revealing itself, and oh, that ending! Captivating and uniquely atmospheric, The Unravelling has been chosen as both a LoveReading Star Book and Liz Pick of the Month.

Liz Robinson

The Unravelling Synopsis

A darkly beautiful dual-timeline novel with a captivating mystery, for fans of Diane Setterfield and Kiran Millwood Hargrave

When Tartelin Brown accepts a job with the reclusive Marianne Stourbridge, she finds herself on a wild island with a mysterious history.

Tartelin is tasked with hunting butterflies for Marianne's research. But she quickly uncovers something far more intriguing than the curious creatures that inhabit the landscape.

Because the island and Marianne share a remarkable history, and what happened all those years ago has left its scars, and some terrible secrets. As Tartelin pieces together Marianne's connection to the island, she must confront her own reasons for being there. Can the two women finally face up to the painful memories that bind them so tightly to the past?

Atmospheric and deeply emotional, The Unravelling is the captivating novel from the author of The Illustrated Child.

Win the Women's Prize for Fiction 2022 Shortlist!

Win the Women's Prize for Fiction 2022 Shortlist!

Closing date: 30/05/2022

The Women’s Prize for Fiction – the greatest celebration of women’s creativity – today announces its 2022 Shortlist. And what a thing of beauty it is. Win a copy of the Shortlist with LoveReading. The Bread The Devil Knead by Lisa Allen-Agostini The Sentence by Louise Erdrich Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead 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 29th May 2022. Please ensure that the details you use to enter the competition will be correct at the time the competition ends. The winners will be notified as soon as possible.

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What To Read After The Unravelling

The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois
The Promise
Black Cake
How We Are Translated

Polly Crosby Press Reviews

'Polly Crosby whips up a lush, mythical world . . . realised beautifully in vivid writing. A book worm's treat!' Eve Chase, author of The Glass House

'The Unravelling is a luminous and beautiful novel that gently lures the reader into a captivating story with a mystery at its heart. Polly Crosby expertly weaves together the present and historical strands of the two women who seek solace on a wild, strange island, creating a powerful and haunting atmosphere. The slow unravelling of secrets throughout the novel was utterly absorbing and emotional.' Jennifer Saint, author of Ariadne

'A beautifully written tale of butterflies, secrets and silk' Sonia Velton, author of Blackberry and Wild Rose

'Dreamy image after image, The Unravelling is like a series of beautiful paintings' Sara Sheridan, author of The Fair Botanists

'Immersive, atmospheric and so very imaginative.' Kate Sawyer, author of The Stranding

'Utterly transporting. Polly Crosby plunges us into a hauntingly beautiful landscape with complex and compelling characters, luring us in with her original plot and her elegant prose. A wonderful read' Annabel Abbs, author of Frieda: The Original Lady Chatterley

'Mysterious and suspenseful, The Unravelling is a story of visceral beauty and the transformations life undergoes to survive. Crosby writes with all the intricate and entrancing artistry of a butterfly's wings' A. J. Gnuse, author of The Girl in the Walls

'Polly Crosby is a skilled storyteller, drawing the reader in with a fascinating tale that spools out across two timelines, leading to a dramatic and satisfying finale. She brings the setting of the island to life with weird and wonderful detail that will keep you enthralled' Elizabeth Lee, author of Cunning Women

Other editions of this book

ISBN: 9780008358488
Publication date: 07/07/2022
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9780008358457
Publication date: 06/01/2022
Format: Hardback

ISBN: 9780008358471
Publication date: 06/01/2022
Format: Ebook

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About Polly Crosby

Polly Crosby lives in Norfolk with her husband and son, and her very loud and much-loved Oriental rescue cat, Dali. To find out more about Polly's writing, please visit pollycrosby.com. Polly can also be found on Twitter as @WriterPolly.

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