Reviews

  • "I loved it. I absolutely loved it. It felt like a choose your own adventure version of somebody’s life... I cannot say enough how much I enjoyed it. It’s a writer putting herself through her paces – it’s showing us what she can do and I’m really excited to see what she does next."

    Naomi Alderman, BBC Radio 4 Front Row
  • "Brilliant, bracing... Dazzling... One of the many triumphs of this original, peculiarly truthful book is to leave us questioning what kindness is and what care is, no longer able to take the platitudes of daily life for granted also unwilling to leave them behind."

    Lara Feigel, Guardian
  • "Frances Leviston’s debut work of fiction positively knocked my socks off. Each of the 10 stories in The Voice in My Ear is about a different woman called Claire — an apt appellation for characters illuminating aspects of modern life… She has triumphantly succeeded in turning a poetic perceptivity to the [short story] form."

    Mia Levitin, Financial Times
  • "[The Voice in My Ear has] a psychological and emotional coherence unusual for a story collection… You can feel the subtext pulse between the lines and occasionally, thrillingly, it surges onto the pageExtraordinaryLeviston is so skilled at noticing and cataloguing the emotional abrasion of being a daughter, the toll of motherhood and love’s ability to wound… But these responses are matched, and exceeded, by the admiration, excitement and exhilaration provoked by what she achieves on the page."

    Chris Power, Sunday Times
  • "A sharp, insightful story collectionLeviston is a keen observer of the ways other people can burrow deep inside an individual's mind… The emotional impact of such relationships are, in Leviston's hands, devastatingly, thrillingly clear."

    New Statesman
  • "Award-winning poet Frances Leviston’s impressive debut work of fiction…works brilliantly…inordinately more than a standard short-story collection… Leviston’s imagery leaps off the pageI am not going to forget [these characters] any time soon."

    Lucy Scholes, i
  • "Beautifully, psychologically exact. Leviston reveals, confronts, disarms and pares us from our unwitting, falser selves. Superbly written and fearlessly imagined fiction."

    Sarah Hall
  • "A remarkable work of fiction – the idea behind it is both brilliant and simple, but it is the execution that brings it off so unsettlingly well. Leviston writes with lacerating psychological accuracy, and has a poet's sense for the details that give us – and so much more than us – away. In The Voice in my Ear, the dark undercurrents of our most ordinary relationships are exposed through a series of perfect plots and haunting character studies."

    Patrick McGuinness
  • "A beautiful, brilliant, painful book. It is subtly but unignorably haunting, and its power builds and builds – Leviston has such a clear grasp of the most difficult aspects of being human, and being a woman, from sexual dynamics to surviving your own family. Darkly comic and quietly, devastatingly urgent."

    Daisy Buchanan
  • "The Eric Gregory award-winning poet Frances Leviston makes an auspicious fictional debut with this collection of short stories… Leviston has a beautiful way with prose."

    Alexander Larman, Observer