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  • Published: 29 March 2022
  • ISBN: 9781784744632
  • Imprint: Chatto & Windus
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $29.99

French Braid

The perfect gift for Mother's Day

A stand-out new family novel from the critically acclaimed, Booker-prize shortlisted author of A Spool of Blue Thread

The major new novel from the beloved prize-winning author -- a brilliantly perceptive, painfully true and funny journey deep into one family's foibles, from the 1950s right up to the changed world of today

When the kids are grown and Mercy Garrett gradually moves herself out of the family home, everyone is determined not to notice.

Over at her studio, she wants space and silence. She won't allow any family clutter. Not even their cat, Desmond.

Yet it is a clutter of untidy moments that forms the Garretts' family life over the decades, whether that's a painstaking Easter lunch or giving a child a ride, a fateful train journey or an unexpected homecoming.

And it all begins in 1959, with a family holiday to a cabin by a lake. It's the only one the Garretts will ever take, but its effects will ripple through the generations.

'Exquisitely crafted, tender, hilarious, devastatingly precise, I loved this powerful meditation on the small and often unvoiced moments that can make up a life' RACHEL JOYCE

'Such joyous immersion, I lost myself, and loved this superbly imperfect family' TESSA HADLEY

'A faultless novel, effortlessly profound. I read it in two sittings, totally immersed' VICTORIA HISLOP

'If Anne Tyler isn't the best writer in the world, who is?' BBC RADIO 4 WOMAN'S HOUR

  • Published: 29 March 2022
  • ISBN: 9781784744632
  • Imprint: Chatto & Windus
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $29.99

About the author

Anne Tyler

Anne Tyler was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1941 and grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her bestselling novels include Breathing Lessons,The Accidental Tourist, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, Ladder of Years, Back When We Were Grownups, A Patchwork Planet, The Amateur Marriage, Digging to America, A Spool of Blue Thread, Vinegar Girl and Clock Dance.

In 1989 she won the Pulitzer Prize for Breathing Lessons; in 1994 she was nominated by Roddy Doyle and Nick Hornby as 'the greatest novelist writing in English'; in 2012 she received the Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence; and in 2015 A Spool of Blue Thread was a Sunday Times bestseller and was shortlisted for the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction and the Man Booker Prize.

Also by Anne Tyler

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Praise for French Braid

She is and always will be my favourite author


Anne Tyler really is the best . . . her sheer brilliance makes it all seem so effortless


One of my favourite writers


A queen of American literature

i newspaper

Fans of Anne Tyler will be delighted by French Braid, a family saga that takes us from the 1950s to the present

Must-Read Books 2022, Daily Mail

The ever reliable and delightful Anne Tyler

The Year Ahead in Books, Scotsman

A new Anne Tyler novel is an island of certainty in a tumultuous world

Reasons To Be Cheerful in 2022, Daily Telegraph

Tyler's sentences are wholly hers, instantly recognisable and impossible to duplicate


Such a perfect work of fiction, you want to turn it over like a tapestry to see how it is done; how Tyler can sew gentle humour into a truly heart-wrenching story, and twist all of life's hurts into a family saga that is ultimately life-affirming, and a brisk and thrilling read. We readers are so lucky a writer like Tyler exists


Lushly imagined, psychologically intricate, virtually inhalable...Tyler balances gracefully between tenderness and piquant humor, her insights into human nature luminous


[A] stunning novel

Sainsbury's Magazine

Thoroughly enjoyable...any Tyler book is a gift. Funny, poignant, generous, not shying away from death and disappointment but never doomy or overwrought

Anthony Cummins, Observer

A funny, joyful, brilliantly perceptive journey deep into one Baltimore family's foibles... An uncannily insightful novel that illuminates the kindnesses and cruelties of our daily lives

Eastern Daily Press

An absorbing and perceptive family saga

Liz Earle Wellbeing Magazine

Any Tyler book is a gift. Funny, poignant, generous, not shying away from death and disappointment but never doomy or overwrought, it suggests there's always new light to be shed, whatever the situation, with just another turn of the prism

Anthony Cummins, Observer

This is Tyler at her most Tyler-ish . . . Critics who write her off as folksy might remember that folk tales, with their dark hearts, endure longer and cut deeper than more sophisticated forms. So will the work of this beloved teller of secret, ordinary truths

Melissa Katsoulis, The Times

In a short sentence of two, Tyler possesses the uncanny ability to home in on a particular detail, or a particular incident...and, through them, to reveal an entire world of thought and emotion... [a] beautiful novel of family life as it unfold over the years

Craig Brown, Mail on Sunday

Clever and wise... French Braid is a family epic in miniature

Sameer Rahim, Daily Telegraph

Another masterclass by our greatest chronicler of family life . . . There are many authors today who try to emulate Anne Tyler's technique, but none of them comes close to the lightness of touch, the accuracy of her ear, or the profundity of her vision

Craig Brown, Mail

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