The intriguing story of two eccentric brothers and a troubled young postwoman - three outsiders whose pasts resurface in a captivating novel about guilt and forgiveness.
In a field outside Bromsgrove, two elderly brothers live in adjoining railway carriages. No one visits and they never speak to each other. Until the day Zohra Dasgupta, a young postwoman, delivers an extraordinary letter - from a woman claiming to be the sister they thought had been murdered fifty years earlier.
So begins an intriguing tale: is this woman an impostor? If she's not, what did happen all those years ago? And why are the brothers such recluses? Then there's Zohra. Once a bright, outgoing teenager, the only friend she will see from her schooldays is laidback Crispin, who has roped her in to the restoration of an old railway line on his father's land. For which, as it happens, they need some carriages . . .
With wry humour and a cast of characters as delightful as they are damaged, Clare Morrall tells an engrossing story of past misdeeds and present reckoning, which shows that for all the wrong turnings we might take, sometimes it is possible to retrace our steps.
Astute and vigorously imagined . . . frequently wise and deeply humane . . . After her Booker-shortlisted debut, and two historical novels, Morrall's accomplished move into speculative fiction marks her out as one of our most dependable writers. - Spectator
PRAISE FOR WHEN THE FLOODS CAME:
Morrall's superb imagination makes When the Floods Came hugely entertaining but the real power lies in the warmth of her writing and the charm of her characters. - The Times
Morrall envisions an all too believable dystopian future in a novel that charms and appals in equal measure. - Irish Independent
The measured pace of the story is mesmeric; the wilfulness of adolescence excruciatingly well drawn - Guardian
Superbly imagined . . . A wonderful book by a terrific writer - Daily Mail
Clare Morrall's first novel, Astonishing Splashes of Colour, was published in 2003 and shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize that year. She has since published the novels Natural Flights of the Human Mind, The Language of Others, The Man Who Disappeared, which was a TV Book Club Summer Read in 2010, The Roundabout Man and After the Bombing.
Born in Exeter, Clare Morrall now lives in Birmingham. She works as a music teacher, and has two daughters.