French Braid

French Braid

The Sunday Times Bestseller

Summary

THE MAJOR NEW NOVEL FROM ONE OF THE GREATEST STORYTELLERS OF OUR TIME

A brilliantly perceptive, painfully true and funny journey deep into one family's foibles, from the 1950s right up to the changed world of today

When the kids are grown and Mercy Garrett gradually moves herself out of the family home, everyone is determined not to notice.

Over at her studio, she wants space and silence. She won't allow any family clutter. Not even their cat, Desmond.

Yet it is a clutter of untidy moments that forms the Garretts' family life over the decades, whether that's a painstaking Easter lunch or giving a child a ride, a fateful train journey or an unexpected homecoming.

And it all begins in 1959, with a family holiday to a cabin by a lake. It's the only one the Garretts will ever take, but its effects will ripple through the generations.

'Gorgeous, charming, profound, and written with such lightness of touch' MARIAN KEYES

'A perfect work of fiction' MEG MASON

'French Braid is Anne Tyler at her surgical, spare best' NIGELLA LAWSON

'Exquisitely crafted, tender, hilarious, devastatingly precise, I loved this powerful meditation on the small and often unvoiced moments that can make up a life' RACHEL JOYCE

'Such joyous immersion, I lost myself, and loved this superbly imperfect family' TESSA HADLEY

'A faultless novel, effortlessly profound. I read it in two sittings, totally immersed' VICTORIA HISLOP

'If Anne Tyler isn't the best writer in the world, who is?' BBC RADIO 4 WOMAN'S HOUR


** A 2022 Book to Look Forward To in The Times, Daily Mail, Financial Times, i, Irish Times, Scotsman, Good Housekeeping **

Reviews

  • Deftly done: witty, poignant, wry - and sort of radical . . . Tyler's genius lies in the subtlety with which she portrays her characters' internal worlds . . . another Tyler forte is the focus on things unsaid and the tensions that spread out from these, across generations and even into communities
    Lucy Atkins, Sunday Times

About the author

Anne Tyler

Anne Tyler was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1941 and grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her bestselling novels include Breathing Lessons, The Accidental Tourist, Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, Ladder of Years, Back When We Were Grown-ups, Digging to America, A Spool of Blue Thread, Clock Dance and Redhead by the Side of the Road.

In 1989 she won the Pulitzer Prize; in 1994 she was nominated by Roddy Doyle and Nick Hornby as 'the greatest novelist writing in English'; and in 2012 she received the Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence. In 2015 A Spool of Blue Thread was shortlisted for the Baileys Women's Prize for Fiction and the Booker Prize; and in 2020 Redhead by the Side of the Road was longlisted for the Booker Prize.
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