Futh, a rather pathetic recently-separated, middle-aged man with a mother fixation, goes for a disastrous walking tour in Germany.
In this book, all relationships are doomed. Futh has a loveless marriage with Angela who, we assume, cheats on him. Ester, his hotel-keeper, cheats on Bernard. Futh's mum leaves Futh's dad. Futh's dad, who is boring, drunk and violent, hooks up with Gloria, whose husband left her. I cannot recall anyone happy in the book.
The prose is taut. Many things are left unsaid. This makes the reader fill in the gaps, often to discover later that the gaps have been filled incorrectly. Lighthouses permeate the book. Significant events are replayed over and over again. And the book heads to an inevitable doom (we assume, this is another gap which we fill in).
Miserable but rather well written, this book was a worthy Booker shortlist in 2012 losing to Hilary Mantel with Bring Up The Bodies. February 2013; 183 pages
- Having reviewed over 1200 books on this blog, I have now written two myself. Motherdarling is a story about a search for a missing Will which reveals long-hidden family secrets. The Kids of God is a thriller set in a dystopia ruled by fascist paramilitaries. Both are available as paperbacks and on Kindle through Amazon. I live in Canterbury, England. I lived for more than thirty years in Bedford. Having retired from teaching; I became a research student at the University of Bedfordshire researching into Liminality. I achieved my PhD in 2019. I am now properly retired. I love reading! I enjoy in particular fiction (mostly great and classic fiction although I also enjoy whodunnits), biography, history and smart thinking. Follow me on twitter: @daja57