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After Me Comes the Flood Paperback – 26 Jun 2014

3.1 out of 5 stars 145 customer reviews

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Paperback, 26 Jun 2014
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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Serpent's Tail; Main - Re-jacket edition (26 Jun. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846689457
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846689451
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.8 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars 145 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 364,171 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


Sarah Perry's prose is, on the surface, straightforward and calm - but a great sense of depth permeates it, and a sense of frantic foreboding builds through its moments of intense colour...A house and the mysteries it contains; a disconcerting, dark reservoir to which everyone's attention returns, and in general a deeply unsettling sense of place - all made me think of Fowles' The Magus, Maxwell's The Chateau, and Woolf's To The Lighthouse. I loved it. (Katherine Angel, author of UNMASTERED)

Reading Sarah Perry's extraordinary debut novel, it is hard not to reach for comparisons, if only in a bemused attempt to work out just why this book is so very good ... It is as if some doleful figure from a Kafka story, a Josef K, perhaps, had wandered into the magical otherworld that Alain-Fournier created in Le Grand Meaulnes, with its enchanted house, its strangely interim landscape, its sense that clock and calendar time no longer apply and that the land itself has become a pagan limbo, differing only from its Christian counterpart in having a function ... Little more can be revealed, not only because the novel's suspense should not be betrayed, but also because it is so hard to paraphrase its dramatic power. Without wishing to compare it with run-of-the-mill "page-turners", I could not put this book down. However, what Perry does here is to render the suspense metaphysical, one might even say environmental: we care about her characters, as we care about the characters in a novel by Thomas Hardy, say, but it is also the case that her dramatis personae, like Hardy's, are transcended by the drama that unfolds in the land, in the air and, most of all, in the water that surrounds them ... As the novel reveals its battery of abstract menace, a new comparison comes to mind: Flann O'Brien of The Third Policeman orThe Dalkey Archive ... By the close the careful reader emerges with a sense of having encountered a unique new writing talent, already working at a level of subtlety and restraint that many more seasoned novelists lack. Some of the comparisons reached for on the way may sound rather grand, in the context, but with a book such as After Me Comes the Flood, talk of a fine debut and the promise of things to come should be set aside. What makes this novel truly remarkable is its unique vision, its skilful and sophisticated characterisations, and the creation, without unseemly effects, of an atmosphere that will haunt readers long after the final page. (John Burnside Guardian 2014-06-28)

A dark, marvellous novel ... Perry evokes the oppressive atmosphere in precise, elegant prose ... This mesmeric quality recalls Sebald's writing, but Gothic-smudged ... It is not good for a first novel, just very good full stop. So pour yourself a cool drink and bask in a dazzling new writing talent. (Catherine Blyth Sunday Telegraph 2014-07-13)

Perry's debut successfully creates an air of real eeriness and tension ... the real pleasure here is in her insightful and convincing depiction of family. (Lesley McDowell Glasgow Herald 2014-07-13)

Impossible to put down (Image Magazine 2014-07-01)

An original and haunting book ... a mix of elegant, alluring, but subtly sinister characters ... a talented writer (Christina Appleyard Daily Mail 2014-07-18)

Just occasionally you pick up a novel that is inexplicably gripping from the first page - and Perry's debut is one of them ... a hypnotic performance with an understated, dreamlike conviction. It is a remarkable first outing from a writer we should be hearing more of in the future (Phil Barker Sunday Times 2014-07-20)

Perry's work harnesses the mythic power of religious and historical texts to lend weight and wonderment ... she is adept at peeling back the skin to reveal a detailed anatomy of psychological motivation ... A gripping, memorable, impressive debut. (Holly Williams Independent on Sunday 2014-07-27)

A taut summer thriller (Harper's Bazaar 2014-07-25)

A deeply creepy and startlingly well-written tale of religion and mystery (Sam Byers TLS 2014-06-13)

About the Author

Sarah Perry was born in Essex in 1979, and grew up in a deeply religious home. Kept apart from contemporary culture, she spent her childhood immersed in classic literature, Victorian hymns and the King James Bible. She has a PhD in creative writing at Royal Holloway which she completed under the supervision of Andrew Motion. She has been writer in residence at the Gladstone Library and is the winner of a Shiva Naipaul award for travel writing. She lives in Norwich.

Her debut novel, After Me Comes the Flood, won the East Anglian Book of the Year Award 2014

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