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Shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award 2008.
Costa Book Awards 2008 Judges' comment: "A riveting story about what makes us who we are by a truly accomplished novelist."
Charlie Weir is a man who tackles other people’s demons for a living. He has seen every kind of trauma during his years as a psychiatrist in New York City, and yet hasn’t found a way to resolve the conflicts within his own family – his bitter rivalry with his brother Walt, a successful painter, his estrangement from his shiftless father and his stifling relationship with his dying mother. And he has never overcome the terrible blunder, seven years before, that lost him his wife and daughter, leaving him prone to corrosive loneliness and restless anger.
When Walt introduces Charlie to Nora Chiara, he is drawn as much to her air of suffering as he is to her striking beauty. They fall for each other quickly, hungrily, but their bliss is short-lived. Her vulnerability, once so irresistible, begins to sour their life together, and Charlie realises that she is now patient first, lover second. And as he probes at the source of her distress, a half-memory from deep in his own unconscious mind begins to arouse a horrifying suspicion...
‘Few writers are capable of taking their readers to such dark places with such evident relish. Among McGrath’s greatest skills lies the ease with which he compels us to read on as his tales of madness, murder, abuse and incest unfold … this masterly specimen of modern gothic delivers the unsettling sting in its tail’ Financial Times
‘A gripping expose of life on the hinterland of sanity … McGrath is that rare yet essential thing, a writer who can expose our darkest fears without making us run away from them’ New Statesman
‘A bolt of queasily inspiring brilliance’ Eileen Battersby, Irish Times
‘McGrath has the gift, the storyteller’s gift, to compel attention, so that you gaze rapt into the fire and listen to the tale unfold’ Sunday Times
Publication date: 05/01/2009
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing Plc
|Publication date:||5th January 2009|
|Publisher:||Bloomsbury Publishing Plc|
|Genres:||eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,|
|Categories:||Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),|
Patrick McGrath is the author of a short story collection, Blood and Water and Other Tales, and six previous novels including Spider, Asylum, Martha Peake and Port Mungo. His most recent book was Ghost Town, a volume of novellas about New York. Spider was made into a film in 2002 by acclaimed director David Cronenberg. Patrick McGrath lives in London and New York. Photgraph © Marion EttlingerMore About Patrick Mcgrath