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The Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller
‘Superb’ The Times
‘Sharp, searching . . . utterly of the moment’ Hilary Mantel, author of Wolf Hall
‘So accomplished’ Guardian
‘A masterpiece’ Jessie Burton, author of The Miniaturist
‘One of her best’ Irish Times
‘Beautifully written, intense, powerful’ David Nicholls, author of Sweet Sorrow
From the acclaimed author of Ghost Wall, Summerwater is a devastating story told over twenty-four hours in the Scottish highlands, and a searing exploration of our capacity for both kinship and cruelty in these divided times.
On the longest day of the summer, twelve people sit cooped up with their families in a faded Scottish cabin park. The endless rain leaves them with little to do but watch the other residents.
A woman goes running up the Ben as if fleeing; a retired couple reminisce about neighbours long since moved on; a teenage boy braves the dark waters of the loch in his red kayak. Each person is wrapped in their own cares but increasingly alert to the makeshift community around them. One particular family, a mother and daughter without the right clothes or the right manners, starts to draw the attention of the others. Tensions rise and all watch on, unaware of the tragedy that lies ahead as night finally falls.
Longlisted for the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction 2021.
‘Nothing escapes her sly humour and brilliant touch. Deft and brimming with life, Summerwater is a novel of endless depth. A masterpiece.’ Jessie Burton, author of The Miniaturist
‘Summerwater may be her best so far.’ The Times
‘This latest display of Moss’s imaginative versatility shine[s] with intelligence’ Sunday Times
Moss combines exquisite nature writing, original characters and a cracking thriller plot. [Ghost Wall] deserves to pull her . . . on to the prize podiums. * The Times * One of the finest contemporary writers working in Britain today * Stylist * Moss’s star is firmly in the ascendant * Guardian * I read this brilliant novel in one greedy gulp. Sarah Moss is an acute observer of modern life and puts humanity on the page with deep understanding and wit. — Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love This novel – about crisis and isolation in its own ways – moved and encouraged me in difficult times. Another deft, sensitive, crystalline book by Sarah Moss; I loved it. — Megan Hunter, author of The End We Start From One of our very best contemporary novelists. * Independent * Moss has quietly, and it must be said remarkably quickly, been putting out some of the most interesting and carefully sculpted novels of recent years. * Financial Times * Moss is the most brilliant writer. She deserves to win all the prizes. — Joanna Trollope, author of City of Friends With delicate precision, Summerwater takes the moral and emotional temperature of a whole society. It is matchless, too, in its blending of steely insight with humour and compassion. — Pankaj Mishra, author of The Age of Anger Summerwater is a beautiful book, written with delicacy and grace, yet with an undertow as dark as the Scottish loch by which its characters are holidaying in ignorance of the tragedy to come. If you are a huge fan of Moss’s work, as I am, you will find yourself parceling it out, to read a chapter a day, like a gift. — Louise Doughty, author of Apple Tree Yard Summerwater is a triumph and confirms Sarah Moss as one of the best writers at work in Britain today.
Britain today. — Fiona Mozley, author of Elmet Nothing escapes her sly humour and brilliant touch. Deft and brimming with life, Summerwater is a novel of endless depth. A masterpiece. — Jessie Burton, author of The Miniaturist Sharp, searching, thoroughly imagined, it is utterly of the moment, placing its anxious human dots against a vast indifferent landscape; with its wit and verve and beautiful organisation it throws much contemporary writing into the shade! — Hilary Mantel, Man Booker winning author of Wolf Hall
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