Competition published on July 15, 2016.
An elite surgeon with a brilliant but philandering husband, Flora Macintyre has always defined herself by her success in juggling her career and her marriage.
Until, all at once, she finds herself with neither. Retired and widowed in the space of a few months, Flora is left untethered in a moment of madness, she realises there’s nothing to stop her running away to France.
But back home her two daughters are struggling: Lou is balancing pregnancy with a crumbling relationship, while her younger sister Kitty, begins to realise she may have to choose between love and her growing passion for music.
And even as the family try to pull together, one dark secret could still them all apart….
A wonderful page-turner of a novel about the complexity of female life, by a new writer who understands it all too well. You can have it all but only if you’re prepared to pay the price.
– Fay Weldon
**We have 8 copies of The Things You Do for Love by Rachel Crowther to give away – scroll down for your chance to win!**
Rachel picked out her top 5 books for us…if you liked any of these, we think you’ll love her new novel!
A Change of Climate by Hilary Mantel
I’m a huge fan of Hilary Mantel, but this early novel is far and away my favourite of her books. It tells the story of a family living quiet, worthy lives in Norfolk, and of the terrible secrets they left behind in Africa. It is, of course, beautifully told, the South African townships and the East Anglian coast evoked as vividly as the characters, with their damaged hearts, their imperfections, and their struggle to sustain a decent, fruitful life when something is missing from the core of it.
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
Told from the point of view of five women in an American missionary family in the 1960’s, and set against the background of civil war in the Congo, this is another story of the way passionate good intentions can go disastrously awry, and of how families can fall apart and minds can be undone as a result. The account of the Prices’ doomed attempts to grow American crops in Africa, without the right kind of pollinators, is a wonderful metaphor for the tragic failures at the heart of the novel.
The Magician’s Assistant by Ann Patchett
This is a magical novel about a magician – and his assistant, Sabine. When his lover dies of AIDS, Parsifal marries Sabine, who has always adored him. When Parsifal dies, Sabine discovers that almost nothing he told her about himself was true. Shocked and grieving, she finds herself drawn into his long-lost family, exploring the past he worked so hard to leave behind, and discovering things about herself along the way. Set in sunny Los Angeles and snow-bound Nebraska, this is a wonderful novel about love, families and secrets.
A Perfectly Good Man by Patrick Gale
I love Patrick Gale’s novels, and this is a wonderful example of his skill in conjuring characters who are complex, sympathetic and imperfect, and facing them with the dilemmas, setbacks, failures, hard choices and twists of Fate familiar to us all. Set in West Cornwall, it is powerfully evocative of that beautiful, wild countryside, and of the lives of the six people who share the telling of this tale, and whose fates entwine around long-buried secrets and smothered hopes.
A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore
This is the story of twenty-year-old Tassie Keltjin, a Midwestern farmer’s daughter introduced to the richness and complexity of urban culture – and of love – through her experiences at university and her job as nanny to a sophisticated couple who are adopting a child. Radical politics, the military, race and religion all play a part in Tassie’s journey of discovery – as does the realisation that nothing is ever quite as it seems in life. Tassie’s bizarre but compelling mixture of wisdom and uncertainty, of hope and cynicism, pervades this quirky and highly memorable novel.
We have 8 copies of The Things You Do for Love by Rachel Crowther to give away – for your chance to win simply fill in the form below:
The Competition is closed.
About the author
Rachel Crowther is a doctor who worked for the NHS for 20 years and the mother of five children. She dabbled in creative writing between babies and medical exams, until an Arvon course prompted her to take it more seriously. She’s also a keen musician and cook. The Things You Do For Love is her second novel.
The Things You Do for Love by Rachel Crowther, published by Zaffre on 11 August, 2016 in paperback at £7.99
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