> Skip to content
About the book
  • Published: 1 August 2012
  • ISBN: 9780099555469
  • Imprint: Vintage
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 384
  • RRP: $22.99
Categories:

The Blue Book




An extraordinary story of love, loss and the act of deception from one of the finest novelists in contemporary British fiction.

You are crossing the Atlantic on a liner with your boyfriend who may or may not be planning to propose.

You are fleeing the past - your ex-lover Arthur, the man who helped you dupe the vulnerable into believing loved ones were trying to make contact from beyond the grave.

But there's a secret you've kept from Arthur, a deception about the two of you that threatens to emerge when you discover Arthur's presence on the boat.

  • Pub date: 1 August 2012
  • ISBN: 9780099555469
  • Imprint: Vintage
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 384
  • RRP: $22.99

About the Author

A.L. Kennedy

A. L. Kennedy has twice been selected as one of Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists and has won a host of other awards – including the Costa Book of the Year for her novel Day. She lives in London and is a part-time lecturer in creative writing at Warwick University.

Also by A.L. Kennedy

See all

Praise for The Blue Book

“AL Kennedy is almost unique among British novelists for her ability to write fiction that is at once challengingly experimental, luminously beautiful and utterly readable. It helps that she is fiercely observant and very funny... If you want a guide to the rough contradictions of the heart, AL Kennedy is your woman”

Jane Shilling, Evening Standard

“An amazing conception, one that will make you want to turn back and start again the moment you have finished... the writing is as taught and thrilling as Kennedy's prose always is and there is her usual wry laughter chuckling within it all”

Joan Bakewell, New Statesman

“This is a masterful novel, imaginatively crafted, shaped by big, precisely articulated emotion”

The Times

“Kennedy is a fine stylist and single passages are exquisite”

Financial Times

“Offers the pleasures of a work in which form and content dovetail with extraordinary skill, and in which narrative tricks are utilised to enlarge on the theme of deception rather than for the sake of tricksiness itself”

Edmund Gordon, Sunday Times

“It displays all the verbal artistry and emotional force of its predecessor, burrowing deep into the minds of its intense central characters”

Amber Pearson, Daily Mail

“The more mysterious elements of the novel's structure...make the book a giddy pleasure”

Anthony Cummins, Literary Review

“An impressive novel”

Keith Miller, Daily Telegraph

“If you like Kennedy's work, with its cool wit, spare stylishness, sharp sense of place and world-worn tenderness, then you'll find all those attributes here”

Keith Miller, Independent on Sunday

“Always a bold writer, she observes the world with a refreshingly skewed intelligence, and her well-known darkness, sometimes verging on morbidity, is always leavened with wit and humour. She also writes beautifully”

Guardian

“An amazing conception, one that will make you want to turn back and start again the moment you have finished...the writing is as taut and thrilling as Kennedy's prose always is and there is her usual wry laughter chuckling within it all”

Joan Bakewell, New Statesman, Books of the Year

“Complex and complicated in the very best way”

Erica Wagner, The Times, Books of the Year

“This woman is a profound writer”

Richard Ford

“Kennedy is as disconcertingly accurate at tenderness as at wildness... A passionate writer, on the edge and at risk”

New York Times Book Review

“Kennedy writes with flaying precision about the things we won't often admit to ourselves, let alone speak aloud”

Daily Mail

“A virtuoso of prose. Her phrasing is fine-tuned and supple to the highest degree: intuitive and subtle about the multifarious sensations of being alive”

London Review of Books

“One of the most brilliant writers of her generation.”

Sunday Telegraph

“Kennedy's sixth novel might move by turns through mystery, love story and comedy of shipboard manners, but its central subject is the transgressive, near-sexual pleasure of passing off fiction as fact”

New Statesman

“A tricksy, dazzlingly playful novel from this exhilarating Scottish author”

Metro

“The story takes on a dual purpose, questioning the reader’s appreciation of what is truth and what is deception”

Big Issue

“Beth’s compulsive self-examination makes this novel as hard to turn away from as it is unsettling to read”

Herald

“She observes the world with a refreshingly skewed intelligence, and her well-known darkness is always leavened with wit and humour”

Carol Birch, Guardian

“It may take a while to find your land-legs after reading Kennedy, but the trip will have been well worth the effort”

Independent

“A stylistically experimental writer, Kennedy reveals the inner workings of those who peddle stories for a living”

Emma Hagestadt, Independent and i

“AL Kennedy is almost unique among British novelists for her ability to write fiction that is at once challengingly experimental, luminously beautiful and utterly readable. It helps that she is fiercely observant and very funny...If you want a guide to the rough contradictions of the heart, AL Kennedy is your woman”

Jane Shilling, Evening Standard


Related titles