The Past

The Past

'Poetic, tender and full of wry humour. A delight.' - Sunday Mirror

Summary


Rivalry, unruly desire and ugly secrets poison a family holiday in this gripping novel from the Sunday Times bestselling author of Free Love and Late in the Day.

'Few writers give me such consistent pleasure' Zadie Smith

Four siblings meet up in their grandparents' old house for three long, hot summer weeks. But under the idyllic surface lie shattering tensions.

Roland has come with his new wife, and his sisters don't like her. Fran has brought her children, who soon uncover an ugly secret in a ruined cottage in the woods. Alice has invited Kasim, an outsider, who makes plans to seduce Roland's teenage daughter. And Harriet, the eldest, finds her quiet self-possession ripped apart when passion erupts unexpectedly.

Over the course of the holiday, a familiar way of life falls apart forever.

'Exquisite' The Times

'Wonderful' Guardian

'Magnificent' Sunday Times

Reviews

  • One of the best novels of 2016.
    Ron Charles, Washington Post

About the author

Tessa Hadley

Tessa Hadley is the author of seven highly praised novels, Accidents in the Home, which was longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award, Everything Will Be All Right, The Master Bedroom, The London Train, Clever Girl, The Past, Late in the Day and three collections of stories, Sunstroke, Married Love and Bad Dreams. She won a Windham-Campbell prize for Fiction in 2016, The Past won the Hawthornden Prize for 2016, and Bad Dreams won the 2018 Edge Hill Short Story Prize. Her stories appear regularly in the New Yorker.
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