Kate Saunders

Secret Lives

The Bone Clocks

By

Sceptre 595pp £20 order from our bookshop

Like David Mitchell’s Booker-shortlisted Cloud Atlas from 2004, his latest novel, The Bone Clocks, is a terrific feat of literary engineering. The first section of the book is the least successful. It’s 1984 and fifteen-year-old Holly Sykes, who lives in a pub in Gravesend, runs away after a row with her mother. Holly is an ordinary teenager, but there is something very odd lurking in her background. As a little girl she heard voices in her head, and an icy blonde woman appeared at the end of her bed; she gave her name as ‘Miss Constantin’. Eventually, a mysterious Dr Marinus banished the voices inside Holly, apparently with a few waves of the hand.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • 'Darley’s book is not a mad dash through this most compelling and complex of English counties. Nor is it another ti… ,
    • 'Moser’s book offers such a gripping account of a profoundly damaged human being, trapped in a cycle of repetition,… ,
    • 'Ideas that I’d thought were set down in full continue to smoulder ... this book is only a snapshot of some larger… ,
    • 'Full of invention which, at its most pedestrian, is eminently Victorian, and at its most unrestrained wildly imagi… ,
    • 'What in other hands could have been a dry, pedantic account of Christianity’s birth and evolution becomes in Holla… ,
    • RT : One of my favourite literary magazines is celebrating 40 years this year. Here is the September edition of… ,
    • 'Now that the Thames is too fast-flowing to freeze, its spirit’s devotees ... have found other climes for their pri… ,