- June 2nd 2011
A stunning take on religious cults. A masterpiece
— Sophie Hannah
A relentlessly inventive, sharp and intelligent thriller
— Daily Mirror
The last time Dodie sees her mother, Stella is unusually restless and spruced-up in a red velvet dress. Soon after this, Dodie’s younger brother Seth disappears. Desperate to find him, Dodie leaves her young son with his father and follows Seth’s trail to the Soul Life Centre: a peculiar, enclosed community in upstate New York, presided over by the messianic figure called ‘Our Father’. Trying to gain access to Seth, she joins the Brothers and Sisters in their communal living, meditation, fasting and chanting. But as her son arrives at the centre with his father, Dodie finds her family dangerously entangled in their rituals.
Thirty years earlier, reeling from their mother’s death, two teenage sisters are starting their new life alone. When their end-of-school party is gatecrashed by an older crowd, they meet Bogart, a good-looking hippy with a honeyed voice and magnetic energy. And so begins their unconventional family life.
As these two stories reverberate, a series of surprising connections is revealed in a shocking and exhilarating conclusion.
Frightening yet eerily beautiful, her novels are fresh, inventive and deeply-felt
— Hilary Mantel
A natural storyteller who knows how to keep the reader turning the pages
Great on the way that even people who style themselves as strong and sceptical can, when they’re vulnerable and the right buttons are pushed, yield to arch manipulations. Glaister is an agile, attentive writer who deserves to be read
A complex and satisfying novel that lingers in the mind long after the tense conclusion has faded
— Scotland on Sunday