Megan Hunter talks to Those Precious Stolen Moments about her debut novel The End We Start From, released 18th May 2107, published by Picador.
The publisher's blurb: In the midst of a mysterious environmental crisis, as London is submerged below flood waters, a woman gives birth to her first child, Z. Days later, the family are forced to leave their home in search of safety. As they move from place to place, shelter to shelter, their journey traces both fear and wonder as Z's small fists grasp at the things he sees, as he grows and stretches, thriving and content against all the odds.
This is a story of new motherhood in a terrifying setting: a familiar world made dangerous and unstable, its people forced to become refugees. Startlingly beautiful, Megan Hunter's The End We Start From is a gripping novel that paints an imagined future as realistic as it is frightening. And yet, though the c...
Buzz: Praised by George Saunders and Kamila Shamsie. Vogue's debut novelist to watch 2018.
There are moments when Peach is stunningly realistic; the raw sensations capture a pure essence of trauma. But this is far from a realistic book. To read and enjoy it you need to be prepared to embrace the bizarre, the surreal and the downright ridiculous.
It’s a book of impressions, and language. The first line tells you, inescapably, that we’re setting aside convention. “Thick stick sticky sticking wet ragged wool winding round the wounds...” This novella is dense with alliteration, assonance, repetition and rhythm, and it shifts and slips around.
The best way to explain it is with examples, so here’s another: “The blotches blind me. I walk blind by Green’s side. Blind side. Blindsided. and I close my eyes seeing as I can’t see anyway. The orange blotches pin themselves to the inside of my eyelids....
This strand is also packed with a knowing humour, from the throwaway - “I am a geriatric primigravida, but I don’t look it,” - to her description of labour, “Between the waves of disembowelling wrench the world is shining. I feel like Aldous Huxley on mescaline.”