by Cressida Connolly
Pub Date 19 May 2022 | Archive Date 19 May 2022
A rich, immersive novel about memory, tragedy and loss, spanning three generations of one family, by the author of After the Party
Bad Relations tells the story of a family fractured by history, geography and desire. On the battlefields of the Crimea, William Gale cradles the still-warm body of his brother. William's experience of war is to bring about a change in him that will reverberate through his family over the next two centuries. In the 1970s, William's English descendants invite Stephen, a distant Australian cousin, to stay in their bohemian house in Cornwall - but their golden summer entanglements will end in a dramatic fall from grace. Half a century later, a confrontation between the surviving members of the family culminates in a terrible reckoning.
Cressida Connolly's magnificent new novel is a tale of a tragedy that seeps through generations, and a family forced to confront what they truly value in life.
PRAISE FOR AFTER THE PARTY
‘A writer who seems able to peer directly into the human heart’ John Preston
‘Uncanny, evocative, atmospheric’ Sunday Times
‘A terrifically subtle writer’ Daily Telegraph
‘Profound and moving and completely original, with a storyline that is completely satisfying. It’ll be one of those novels that stays in my mind for ever … it’s a work of art’ Craig Brown
‘I finished it in two days flat and I’ve never read anything quite like it’ Hilary Spurling
‘Wonderfully subtle and interesting’ Linda Grant
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 16 members
Another fascinating story from Cressida Connolly. It's a bit of a tease, this one, as the reader doesn't know how the various strands will tie up until very near the end. However, the author is so competent there is never any doubt that we will get answers the questions we inevitably ask. Starting in the Crimean war, with a medal won and a marriage lost, we move on to a mid- twentieth century meeting of distant cousins, all related to the nineteenth century recipient of the Victoria Cross in question. We then move through tragedy in London, to Australia and, nearer the present time, back to England. This is when things begin to tie up and we see the progression of the plot start to make sense. Beautifully written, compelling and a powerful story.