Winner of the 2010 Costa Novel of the Year Award
14 out of 18 BookBrowse readers rated
The Hand That First Held Mine 5 out of 5 stars:
Rich with complex themes and an evocative style...
The tempestuous nature of memory, coupled with the joys and terrors of motherhood, animates this sharp-edged novel that deserves comparison with the fine yet often marginalized British female writers of the early-to-late-twentieth century, such as Nina Bawden, Molly Keane, and Daphne Du Maurier (see sidebar); while Maggie O'Farrell's dry wit and keen observations owe a debt to these predecessors, she connects the past (London in the 1950s, '60, and '70s) to the present in startling and evocative ways... Imaginistic clues ultimately help unlock a decades-old mystery, one as devastating as it is intriguing, and perfectly suit a book...
Beyond the Book
According to BookBrowse reviewer Marnie Colton, Maggie O'Farrell's dry wit and keen observations owe a debt to these predecessors:
Nina Bawden (b. 1925)
Nina Bawden, CBE, is one of Britain's most distinguished and best-loved novelists for adults and children. She has published over forty novels and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Circles of Deceit
. In 2004 she received the PEN Award for a Lifetime's Service to Literature. A number of her works have been dramatized by BBC Children's television, and many have been translated into various languages. In March 2010, Bawden was shortlisted for the Lost Man Booker Prize, to be awarded by public...