A Dry Spell

A Dry Spell

Summary

From the highly-acclaimed author of SMALL PLEASURES - winner of the 2022 British Book Awards Page-Turner

____________________
In 1976 four students took a trip to the desert. Now the repercussions of that fateful summer are coming back to haunt them...

And repercussions are just what Guy doesn't need: his wife, Jane, is moving swiftly from slightly eccentric to downright peculiar, their three-year-old daughter seems set on destroying Jane's sanity, and now even God's gone quiet on him.

As for Nina, she's having enough trouble with her son, James. He's got exams looming, a new girlfriend with pneumatic breasts and now, it seems, he's on drugs. Nina certainly won't welcome any ghosts from the past.

Life isn't going smoothly for anyone. But when Hugo, long-forgotten agent of misfortune, threatens to pay them all a visit, disaster seems unavoidable.
____________________
Praise for Clare Chambers:

'A wonderful novel. I loved it' Nina Stibbe on Small Pleasures

'Gorgeous... If you're looking for something escapist and bittersweet, I could not recommend more' Pandora Sykes on Small Pleasures

'An irresistible novel - wry, perceptive and quietly devastating' Mail on Sunday on Small Pleasures

'Chambers' eye for undemonstrative details achieves a Larkin-esque lucidity' Guardian on Small Pleasures

'An almost flawlessly written tale of genuine, grown-up romantic anguish' Sunday Times on Small Pleasures

About the author

Clare Chambers

Clare Chambers was born in south east London in 1966. She studied English at Oxford and spent the year after graduating in New Zealand, where she wrote her first novel, Uncertain Terms, published when she was 25. She has since written eight further novels, including Learning to Swim (Century 1998) which won the Romantic Novelists' Association best novel award and was adapted as a Radio 4 play, and In a Good Light (Century 2004) which was longlisted for the Whitbread best novel prize.

Clare began her career as a secretary at the publisher André Deutsch, when Diana Athill was still at the helm. They not only published her first novel, but made her type her own contract. In due course she went on to become a fiction and non-fiction editor there herself, until leaving to raise a family and concentrate on her own writing. Some of the experiences of working for an eccentric, independent publisher in the pre-digital era found their way into her novel The Editor's Wife (Century, 2007). When her three children were teenagers, inspired by their reading habits, she produced two YA novels, Bright Girls (HarperCollins 2009) and Burning Secrets (HarperCollins 2011).

Her most recent novel is Small Pleasures (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2020).

She takes up a post as Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of Kent in September 2020.
Learn More

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more