A coruscating comedy about the ties that bind more savagely than any other – those of families.
Lovers, colleagues, family - Tilly has always been brilliant at pushing people in and out of her life exactly as it suits her. Then along comes Geoffrey, gentle, compassionate, generous to a fault, with his miserable little children and his manipulative ex-wife. Tilly's own expertise in the arts of deception and avoidance should be enough to make sure she's always one step ahead of Geoffrey's shitty, crumbling family. But time and again she finds herself staying, brought down by their cowardly backsliding and their barefaced lies. How has she managed to stay so long in a relationship she knows perfectly well has to be doomed? More importantly, how can Tilly plan her permanent escape?
“'So savage and sharp in its insights that it cuts, this is a brilliantly compulsive, forensic dissection of a relationship built on ironies and evasions'”
“'A fearless novelist . . . also a constantly amusing writer. The result is an unsettling, sometimes angry but always engrossing story'”
“'A very admirable and compelling novel'”
“'[A] remarkable novel...there is something terrifyingly recognisable in each of the characters that will have readers looking deep inside their souls'”
“'Written with humour and barbed wit'”
“'Admirably acute observations of the trivialities of domestic life'”
The Mail on Sunday
“'Displays her familiar cool, unfussy style'”
“'Searing black comedy...a clear-eyed and fearless look at the role of honesty within relationships'”
“'Family relationships are rarely analysed with the depth of black humour that Anne Fine can bring to bear'”
Yorkshire Evening Post
“'A scandalously good read'”
“An enjoyably black and bracingly unsentimental novel”
“Brilliant black comedy”