A TALE OF A TRAGEDY SEEPING THROUGH GENERATIONS, AND A FAMILY FRACTURED BY HISTORY AND DESIRE
‘Bad Relations is an amazing achievement and one of the most satisfying books you’re likely to read this year’ The Times
‘Haunting and beautiful… In recent British fiction I can think only of Tessa Hadley who rivals Connolly in exacting such intricate, compelling drama from close-knit families… I don’t often wish a book were longer, but this one I did’ Observer
On the battlefields of the Crimea, William Gale cradles the still-warm body of his brother. William’s experience of war will bring about a change in him that will reverberate through his family over the next two centuries.
In the 1970s, William’s descendants invite Stephen, a distant relation, to stay in their house in the English countryside – but their golden summer entanglements will end in a shocking fall from grace.
Half a century later, a confrontation between the surviving members of the family will culminate in a terrible reckoning.
‘The characters in Bad Relations are so brilliantly real, so wonderfully compelling at their best, and at their worst, that I can’t get them out of my head. A wonderful novel’ Nina Stibbe
‘This is an Atonement-like novel about the messy stuff that is family life’ Spectator
‘A compelling family saga’ Sunday Times
A ravishing novel from the great family saga-teller Cressida Connolly and an honourable tribute to the past * The Times, Best Books for the Summer * Connolly's vivid characterisation, supple prose and striking imagery sweep you along, in an absorbing and affecting saga that uses one family's story to anatomise the different stages of grief * Daily Telegraph * In recent British fiction I can think only of Tessa Hadley who rivals Connolly in exacting such intricate, compelling drama from close-knit families . . . I don't often wish a book were longer, but this one I did * Observer * Masterful . . . a joy to see it garnering the ecstatic reviews it deserves -- Polly Samson, author of A Theatre for Dreamers Moving [and] powerful . . . Connolly's vividly drawn characters grapple with trauma, unkindness and greed in an intriguing novel where past actions reverberate in the present * Daily Mirror * Connolly, like Anne Tyler and Tessa Hadley, is a master of fluidly shifting perspectives, a sharply witty observer of social class, and a champion of imaginative empathy * Daily Mail * Bad Relations is an amazing achievement and one of the most satisfying books you're likely to read this year * The Times * Elegantly written, this subtle, satisfying, well-observed novel is a delight * Country and Town House, Books of 2022 * Another fascinating, moving story from the author of After the Party * Good Housekeeping * This clever novel set across three timelines tells the story of a family haunted by tragedy. A skilfully written, powerful drama * BEST * The plot is neat, tight and unexpected but the novel's deep satisfaction comes from Connolly's total immersion in historical atmosphere and profound understanding of human pain * Literary Review * A gripping story of love, loss and tragic betrayal * Country and Townhouse * What if you could write a novel whose main plot points are a death in combat, a suicide and the breakdown of family relations, and make it beautiful? What if you dared not to show the grimmest bits, but let them happen off-stage, while using elegant, beautiful prose to paint the spaces around them? Cressida Connolly is that brave writer and Bad Relations is her latest masterpiece . . . ravishing * The Times * Haunting * Observer * The characters in Bad Relations are so brilliantly real, so wonderfully compelling at their best, and at their worst, that I can't get them out of my head. A wonderful novel -- Nina Stibbe A writer who seems able to peer directly into the human heart -- John Preston Uncanny, evocative, atmospheric * Sunday Times on 'After the Party' * Connolly is a terrifically subtle writer... [she] slyly sweeps her readers into the period drama as tensions tauten between families and social classes * Daily Telegraph on 'After the Party' * Profound and moving and completely original, with a storyline that is completely satisfying. It'll be one of those novels that stays in my mind forever... it's a work of art -- Craig Brown on 'After the Party' I finished it in two days flat and I've never read anything quite like it -- Hilary Spurling on 'After the Party' A wonderfully subtle and interesting account of the Mosley women, with a compelling voice -- Linda Grant on 'After the Party'
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