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Shortlisted for the Highland Book Prize
Shetland: a place of sheep and soil, of harsh weather, close ties, and an age-old way of life. A place where David has lived all his life, like his father and grandfather before him. A place that Alice has fled to after the death of her husband. A place where Sandy, a newcomer but already a crofter, may have finally found a home. But times do change, and the valley they all call home must change with them, or be forgotten.
The debut novel from one of our most exciting new literary voices, The Valley at the Centre of the World is a story about community and isolation, about what is passed down, and what is lost between the cracks.
'What I've been waiting for: a moving, authentic novel of the Scottish islands in the twenty-first century'
AMY LIPTROT, Sunday Times Bestselling author of THE OUTRUN
'Life-affirming . . . [Tallack] is a careful and precise writer . . . Given that Mackay Brown and Crichton Smith were two of the best Scottish writers of fiction in the second half of the 20th century, a first novel that sits comfortably alongside their work is a considerable achievement'
Allan Massie, Scotsman
'Tallack’s concern here is with the push and pull of larger forces — love, grief, guilt, need, the idea of home itself. They’re potent themes that could, but rarely do, overshadow characters about which he writes with palpable tenderness . . . A sharp-eyed and evocative painter of place'
'Lyrical . . . Wonderfully atmospheric and moving'