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Trick Of The Light

Jill Dawson

7 Reviews

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Fiction, Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

A riveting tale exploring the complex nature of damaging relationships.

A young couple abandon the urban jungle of London s East End for a remote, mountainous corner of Washington State. Chosen by Mick, who is half-American, the place seems as alien as the moon to Rita. But she soon adjusts to raising their small daughter, Frances, in a broken-down cabin without electricity or water, and revels in the untamed beauty of their surroundings. She's scared, though, of the wild animals howling and screeching outside by night. What she cannot admit is her fear of Mick s violent temper. Worse, perhaps, are her own flashes of anger at Frances, frightening losses of control which leave her feeling shaken and guilty. Then she meets Ryan, a redneck poacher who plants in her mind the seed of rebellion.

In this, her striking debut novel, Jill Dawson creates a subtle and compassionate portrait of a young mother struggling to protect her child and of a father destroyed by his own childhood.

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Praise for Trick Of The Light

  • Excellent a moving, beautifully written tale - The Times

  • The novel held me right to the end. I was constantly interested in Rita and her dilemma and held by the evocation of place - Margaret Forster

  • Taut with narrative tension and memorable for its superb descriptions of landscape and a multitude of deft touches that always seem just right. Above all, this is a genuinely romantic novel, a double love story of love that is raw and raunchy as well as romantic - The Times

  • A taut, compelling story that quells any easy theories about abusive relationships - Times Literary Supplement

  • A brave and necessary novel - Daily Telegraph

  • Explores a destructive relationship with vivid and compelling precision - Jane Rogers

  • I loved it. To carry such threat, such danger and at the same time produce a narrative which is such a joy to read is miraculous - E A Markham

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Jill Dawson

Jill Dawson was born in Durham. She is the author of three novels: Trick of the Light, Magpie and Fred & Edie, which was shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel Award and the Orange Prize and translated into several languages. She is also an award-winning poet and has edited five anthologies, including Wild Ways: New Stories about Women on the Road (co-edited with Margo Daly), The Virago Book of Wicked Verse and the recent Gas and Air: Tales of Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond. She taught at Amherst College and is currently the Creative Writing Fellow at University of East Anglia in Norwich. She lives in the Fens with her partner and two sons.

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