The acclaimed first novel from one of Granta's Best of Young British Novelists 2003, a powerful tale of love, war and divided loyalties.
In 1944, a German Jewish refugee is sent to Wales to interview Rudolf Hess; in Snowdonia, a seventeen-year-old girl, the daughter of a fiercely nationalistic shepherd, dreams of the bright lights of an English city; and in a nearby POW camp, a German soldier struggles to reconcile his surrender with his sense of honour. As their lives intersect, all three will come to question where they belong and where their loyalties lie.
Peter Ho Davies's thought-provoking and profoundly moving first novel traces a perilous wartime romance as it explores the bonds of love and duty that hold us to family, country, and ultimately our fellow man. Vividly rooted in history and landscape, THE WELSH GIRL reminds us anew of the pervasive presence of the past, and the startling intimacy of the foreign.
A beautifully crafted, lyrical novel - Maggie O'Farrell, Observer Books of the Year
Moving, memorable and beautifully written - Jessica Mann, Sunday Telegraph
Deeply felt and vividly imagined - Lionel Shriver, Daily Telegraph
Fresh and engaging...Some sentences and passages are crafted so beautifully and seemingly effortlessly that it provokes envy. - David Cornett, Sunday Express
'Quietly powerful... a fine piece of work - Stephen Knight, Times Literary Supplement
His prose and the evocation of time and place are almost always of the highest order...he approaches the Second World War with a fresh and contemporary style, a gift that he shares with Kazuo Ishiguro - Russell Celyn Jones, The Times
A scintillating instance of fictional imagination applied to history - Richard Eder, New York Times
Impressive...a compelling story in itself, but Davies's special skill lies in integrating conflicts that drive the narrative at a more intense level - Richard Gwyn, Independent
Peter Ho Davies is the author of the novels The Welsh Girl, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, The Fortunes, and A Lie Someone Told You About Yourself and two short story collections: The Ugliest House in the World, winner of the John Llewelyn Rhys and PEN/Macmillan prizes, and Equal Love, which was shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.
His writing has been widely anthologized, including selections for Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards and Best American Short Stories, and in 2003 he was chosen as one of Granta magazine's Best of Young British Novelists. He has also won the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story.
Born in Britain to Welsh and Chinese parents, Davies now lives in the US where he is a professor of Creative Writing at the University of Michigan.