Behind every strong woman is a girl who survived...
'I was completely transported by The Ruins. Phoebe Wynne has evocatively rendered a beautiful, doomed French chateau while creating immersive, almost dream-like atmospherics. I loved this novel' SARAH PEARSE, bestselling author of The Sanatorium
Amidst the glamour of the French Riviera lies the crumbling fa ade of Chateau de Setes, a small slice of France still held by the British aristocracy. But this long since abandoned chateau is now up for sale, and two people are desperate to get their hands on it despite its terrible history.
Summer, 1985: Ruby has stayed at the chateau with her family every summer of her twelve years. It was her favourite place to be, away from the strictures of her formal childhood, but this year uninvited guests have descended, and everything is about to change...
As the intense August heat cloaks the chateau, the adults within start to lose sight of themselves. Old disputes are thrown back and forth, tempers rise, morals loosen, and darkness begins to creep around them all. Ruby and her two young friends soon discover it is best not to be seen or heard as the summer spirals down to one fateful night and an incident that can never be undone...
Summer, 2010: One of the three young girls, now grown and newly widowed, returns to the chateau, and in her fight to free herself from its grip, she uncovers what truly happened that long, dark summer.
With riveting psychological complexity, The Ruins captures the glittering allure of the Mediterranean, and the dark shadows that wait beneath the surface.
I was completely transported by The Ruins. Phoebe Wynne has evocatively rendered a beautiful, doomed French chateau while creating immersive, almost dream-like atmospherics. I loved this novel
- Sarah Pearse, bestselling author of THE SANATORIUM
Tense and atmospheric, The Ruins investigates trauma and memory with a knowing, meticulous hand. The Chateau des Setes - in all its crumbling, sinister glory - will imprint on your psyche as if you, too, spent a fateful summer there years ago... but it's the young women who call it home that leave the most lasting impression. This is a book that understands the inherent dangers of girlhood, and one that believes wholeheartedly in the innate resilience, bravery, and compassion of teenage girls themselves
- Emily Layden, author of ALL GIRLS
Phoebe Wynne worked in education for eight years, teaching Classics in the UK and English Language and Literature in Paris. She left the classroom to focus on her writing, and went on to hone her craft in Los Angeles and in London. In 2021 Phoebe published her debut, Madam, to great acclaim. The Ruins is her second novel. She is both British and French, and currently spends her time between France and England.