A young woman named Alice Raikes boards a train to Scotland to visit her family. But when she arrives, she witnesses something so shocking that she insists on returning to London that very minute. Only a few hours later, Alice is lying in a coma after an accident that may or may not have been a suicide attempt.
With Alice's life hanging in the balance, her family gathers at her bedside. As they wait, argue, and remember, long-buried tensions rise to the surface. The more they talk, the more, it seems, they conceal from each other. Alice, meanwhile, sliding between different levels of consciousness, recalls her past and a recent love affair. Skipping around in time, knitting together the different points of view with astonishing dexterity and beautiful prose, Maggie O'Farrell has created a story of love and family relationships that is reminiscent of the very best of Edna O'Brien and Mary Gordon. With one of the most heart-stopping openings in modern fiction, After You'd Gone is a work of extraordinary psychological depth and impressive maturity.
"It is hard to believe that such an assured work comes from a first novelist ... Published originally in the UK to good reviews, it should appeal to fans of Mary Gordon and Margaret Atwood, though it will draw a more popular audience than the latter." - Library Journal.
"Sharply observed details of everyday life and language, original and telling figures of speech and deftly handled plot twists reach a moving climax, while subtly raising the question of whether the objects of Alice's affection - and the sources of her agony - were worth enduring." - Publishers Weekly.
"The complex structure works beautifully, communicating the shared and interlocking sufferings of the Raikes women through its carefully worked-out layering of narrative lines. Often painful to read, but finally quite satisfying." - Kirkus Reviews.
The information about After You'd Gone shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.
Maggie O'Farrell was born in Northern Ireland in 1972, and grew up in Wales and Scotland. She now lives in Edinburgh with her family.
Her debut novel, After You'd Gone, was published to international acclaim, and won a Betty Trask Award, while her third, The Distance Between Us, won the 2005 Somerset Maugham Award.
O'Farrell is married to William Sutcliffe, author of New Boy (1996), Are You Experienced? (1997), The Love Hexagon (2000) , Bad Influence (2004) and Whatever Makes You Happy (2008).
Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!
Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only
The Angel of Losses
"Family saga, mystery, and myth intersect in Feldman's debut novel." - Booklist
Solve this clue:
and be entered to win..
Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.
Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.