A profoundly moving and evocative novel set in post-war Cumbria
When Sam Richardson returns in 1946 from the 'Forgotten War' in Burma to Wigton in Cumbria, he finds the town little changed. But the war has changed him, broadening his horizons as well as leaving him with traumatic memories. In addition, his six-year-old son now barely remembers him, and his wife has gained a sense of independence from her wartime jobs. As all three strive to adjust, the bonds of loyalty and love are stretched to breaking point in this taut, and profoundly moving novel.
Outstandingly good...Must be one of the best English novels of the last ten years. It rings true; its characters matter...utterly credible, utterly compelling, and very enjoyable - Scotsman
[He] writes with tremendous empathy...One of the tautest and fiercest of Bragg's fictions - Independent
Sympathetic, touching, infinitely believable...a highly accomplished novel - Literary Review
Strong, straightforward, explicit, evocative - Daily Telegraph
A great achievement - Guardian
Reads like Lawrence...Feels like the book Bragg was born to write - Time Out
His study of a relationship between man and wife in difficulties is brilliantly convincing...A passionately moving novel - Financial Times
His masterpiece - Peter Kemp, Books of the Year, Sunday Times
Melvyn Bragg is a writer and broadcaster whose first novel, For Want of a Nail, was published in 1965. His novels since include The Maid of Buttermere, The Soldier's Return, A Son of War, Credo and Now is the Time, which won the Parliamentary Book Award for fiction in 2016. His books have also been awarded the Time/Life Silver Pen Award, the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and the WHSmith Literary Award, and have been longlisted three times for the Booker Prize (including the Lost Man Booker Prize).
He has also written several works of non-fiction, including The Adventure of English and The Book of Books about the King James Bible. He lives in London and Cumbria.