Synopses & Reviews
"Beautifully written. . . . Despite the controversial subject matter this is a tender and sympathetic portrait."Bookseller
"Controversial but sensitively handled."Marie Claire
Susanna is a secretive child, obsessed with the father she has never known and determined that one day she will find him. As an adolescent she becomes increasingly distanced from life at home with her mother and sister. When she finally discovers her father's address and seeks him out, she conceals her identity, beginning an illicit affair that can only end in disaster.
Anne Peile lives in London. This is her first novel.
"Peile's debut novel (long-listed for the U.K.'s Orange Prize) focuses on a love story between an unwitting man and his precocious seventeen-year-old daughter. Despite beautiful prose, the novel's underdeveloped characters prevent Peile from delivering on this daring premise. Susanna ('Susie') grows up in South London without her father, and becomes increasingly obsessed with the man in question John (Jack) ap Rhys Owen. When they meet by a chance encounter, Susie changes from a relatable, yearning girl to a manipulative, misguided young woman. She seduces the married Jack and lies to protect her identity from him, and his identity from her mean-spirited, neglectful mother. Told from Susie's immature and irresponsible perspective, what begins with a promising forbidden kiss ends in a lethal and misplaced sexual awakening. Readers will find it difficult to invest in these characters, particularly the idealized 'father-lover' a selfless man who gives Susie a fair chance to walk away and the villainous mother, who (unlike Jack) remains nameless and is never described, seeming to exist only to deliver acidic insults about Jack. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A transgressive love story by a singular new voice
About the Author
Anne Peile was born in London; she has lived in the South West and Belfast and worked as a cook, writing emails for the BBC and in educational support. She works for a London bookstore.