'Like the sea he describes so well, Patrick Gale's clear, unforced prose sucks one in effortlessly … he is excellent at the telling detail and description.' Elizabeth Buchan, Daily Mail
'There are no false notes in this book.' Marie Claire
'”Rough Music” … is an astute, sensitive and at times tragically uncomfortable meditation on sex, lies and family…. a fabulously unnerving book… a hugely compelling writer.' Independent on Sunday
'It would be churlish to divulge more of the plot, suffice to say that it is as ingenious in design as it is generous in spirit.' Sunday Express
‘Patrick Gale's novels grip tightly, like swaddling clothes, stunning the reader into a state of lolling, contented absorption. How does he do it?' TLS
'”Rough Music”, like its predecessors, belongs to a broad canon of works by English rural moralists. Think Austen, Hardy or Murdoch … His plots – seemingly effortless, but closely structured – resemble Iris Murdoch's … Gripping, elegant and wise.' Independent
From the Back Cover
Patrick Gale's fiction has been acclaimed as 'romantic', 'subtle', 'hip', 'brutal', 'superb'. This is his most assured most accessible novel yet.
ROUGH MUSIC is a family story, covering three generations, starting with an idyllic – though definitely strange – childhood and ending in tragedy.
Julian as a small boy is taken on the perfect Cornish holiday. With the arrival of glamorous American relations emotions run high and events spiral out of control. Though he has been brought up in the forbidding shadows of the prison his father runs, though his parents are neither as normal or as happy as he suposes, Julian's world view is the sunnily selfish, accepting one of boyhood. It is only when he becomes a man- seemingly at ease with love, with his sexuality, with his ghosts – that the traumatic effects of that distant summer rise up to challenge his defiant assertion that he is happy and always has been.
Set mostly on the Cornish beach, against glittering seas, this is a remarkable, wholly recognizable story of the lies which adults tell and of the small acts of treason which a child can commit. Gale presents a compassionate portrayal of the merciful tricks of memory and the courage with which we continue to assert our beliefs in love and happiness.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.