Synopses & Reviews
This lyrical novel introduces a writer of remarkable talent.
"Ten days before Christmas I lost her. What do I remember? Every little thing....For twenty-one years I've picked away at my memory of it, lifting up moments, testing myself. Believing I might have finally healed to a neat white scar."
Pregnant with her first child, Eve Green recalls her mother's death when she was eight years old and her struggle to make sense of her parents' mysterious romantic past. Eve is sent to live with her grandparents in rural Wales, where she finds comfort in friendships with Daniel, a quiet farmhand, and Billy, a disabled, reclusive friend of her mother's. When a ravishing local girl disappears, one of Eve's friends comes under suspicion. Eve will do everything she can to protect him, but at the risk of complicity in a matter she barely understands. This is a timeless and beautifully told story about family secrets and unresolved liaisons.
"A pregnant young woman reflects on her childhood in a tight-knit Wales community in Fletcher's debut, a novel rich sometimes too rich in melancholic, misty atmosphere and poetic poignancy. When Eve's mother dies unexpectedly, the seven-year-old is sent to live with her loving, hard-working grandparents. She devours stories about distant relatives, but is forbidden to ask about her father, an Irish thief who deserted her mother; her only knowledge of him comes from her mother's heartfelt diaries ('In the rain K's hair looks like feathers'). Fletcher is a gifted writer her turn on loss ('[it] billowed out before me, snapping at itself and pulling me with it, streaming out over the sheep hills like a funeral flag...') is especially lovely but the novel often feels overwrought. When a local girl, Rosie, disappears, Eve is dragged into the town's snarled relations in familiar ways, with familiar characters. (Fletcher's debt to Harper Lee includes Billy Macklin, a deformed man ostracized after a head injury that supposedly made him insane, and who is revealed to be gentle and kind.) The dreamy emotionality of the prose takes away from the book's more subtle and singular scenes, such as the awkward, bewitching meeting of Eve and Rosie, child rivals for an older man's love. Such moments stark, troubling and unresolved are too rare in a novel about devotion and guilt. Agent, Vivienne Schuster. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Eve Green is full of grace, wisdom, lyricism, and heart. Reading it made me feel elevated and enriched. I very much look forward to Susan Fletcher's next work: she is bound for great things." Elizabeth Berg, author of Durable Goods, Open House and The Art of Mending
In this timeless and beautifully told story about family secrets and unresolved liaisons, Eve Green, pregnant with her first child, recalls her mother's death when she was eight years old and her struggle to make sense of her parents' mysterious romantic past.
About the Author
Susan Fletcher was born in Birmingham in 1979, and now lives in Warwickshire, England. This is her first novel.