Lucy Lethbridge

Picture Imperfect

On Chapel Sands: My Mother and Other Missing Persons

By

Chatto & Windus 320pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

Laura Cumming’s wonderful, haunting new book slips between genres. It is not quite a memoir, not quite a biography and not straightforwardly an investigation into the past. But this ambiguity fits the nature of its subject: what Cumming explores in this book, which is ostensibly an account of the early life of her mother, is the unreliability of memory itself. It is a poetic study in half-lights and fragments made up of shadowy bits of emotional bric-a-brac, tiny pieces in the jigsaw of a single life.

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