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Fly in the Ointment by Anne Fine

Fly in the Ointment

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Sarah Broadhurst's view...

A perfect gem, a short, sharp tragedy with an unexpected twist. This acclaimed children’s author never disappoints and her adult fiction has an edge that is truly satisfying. I love her.

Comparison: Maggie O’Farrell, Kim Edwards, Sara Banerji.

If you like Anne Fine you might also like to read books by Margaret Forster, Maggie O'farrell and Anne Tyler.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst


Fly in the Ointment by Anne Fine

When, like her cold and indifferent husband, Lois's old life vanishes into thin air, she can't help snatching at the opportunity to come alive.

There's only one fly in the ointment: Janie Gay, the feckless and spiteful mother of her wayward son's child. But as Lois takes her second – and redeeming – chance at love, she finds herself on a collision course with a society that claims to support and protect. She lays her plans, and suddenly it seems that all those years of nurturing her own deep-frozen heart may not have been so wasted after all …

In this, her seventh novel, Anne Fine offers a deeply chilling portrayal of what can happen when the remorseless convictions of society clash with the impulse of a determined mother.


'Fine is a storyteller of brilliance, and this short tragedy is utterly compelling.' The Times

About the Author

Anne Fine

Fly in the Ointment is Anne Fine's seventh novel. Her first was the critically acclaimed The Killjoy, which was runner up for the David Higham Prize for Fiction. Taking the Devil's Advice and Telling Liddy have both been adapted for radio. The Observer referred to her novel In Cold Domain as ‘a glorious tirade against the grind of motherhood’ and the Evening Standard described All Bones and Lies as ‘splendid, clever, cruel and funny ’. Anne Fine’s work has been translated into over thirty languages. She has two grown up daughters and lives in County Durham.

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Book Info

Publication date

12th February 2009


Anne Fine

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Transworld Publishers Ltd


288 pages


Literary Fiction
Family Drama
Reading Groups
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



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