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The dazzling, beautiful and moving new novel from the Costa Prize-winning author of Golden Hill.
‘Francis Spufford has one of the most original minds in contemporary literature.’ Nick Hornby
A German rocket incinerates a South-London household-goods store and five young lives are atomised in an instant.
Jo and Valerie and Alec and Ben and Vernon are gone.
But what if it were possible to resurrect them – to let them experience the extraordinary, unimaginable changes of the twentieth century; to live out all the personal triumphs and disasters, the second chances and redemptions denied to them?
What kind of future would there be for clever, impulsive Alec?
What would happen to Val in the world of men, beckoning beyond her all-female household?
What would become of Vern's greed – and his helplessness in the face of song?
Would light or darkness fill Ben’s fragile mind?
And where would Jo go, with the music playing in her head?
Ingenious and profound, full of warmth and beauty, Light Perpetual is a story of the everyday, the miraculous and the everlasting – a sweeping and intimate celebration of the gift of life.
Francis Spufford’s debut novel, Golden Hill, won the Costa First Novel Award, the RSL Ondaatje Prize, the Desmond Elliott Prize and was shortlisted for the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, the Rathbones Folio Prize, the Authors’ Club Best First Novel Award and the British Book Awards Debut Novel of the Year. Spufford is also the author of five highly praised works of non-fiction, most frequently described by reviewers as either ‘bizarre’ or ‘brilliant’, and usually as both. In 2007 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He teaches writing at Goldsmiths College, University of London, and lives near Cambridge.
‘The dazzling second novel from the author of Golden Hill . . . Intimate, absorbing and technically brilliant.’ The Bookseller
Praise for Golden Hill:
A Sunday Times Top 100 Novel of the Twenty-first Century
'Just wonderful.' Jan Morris
'A novel of gloriously capacious humanity . . . verifiable gold.' Alexandra Harris
'Utterly captivating . . . pitch perfect from the opening sentence.' Richard Eyre
'There are single scenes here more illuminating, more lovingly wrought, than entire books.' Financial Times