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All Bones And Lies

UK Publisher: Transworld

Colin is in many ways an ideal citizen. He holds down a responsible job in the Social Services. He goes to visit his aged mother Norah, shopping for her, cooking her evening meal and listening to her grumbles. He also keeps in touch with his sister Dilys, long estranged from her mother, in a vain attempt to maintain family ties.

But neither Dilys, Norah nor Colin’s friends in the Social Service know about his other life: a much more secret life that involves a garden shed, a circus acrobat and her two-year-old daughter, and a certain Mr Haksar who has a worrying penchant for squabbling with his neighbours.

What Colin doesn’t know is that, thanks to a house insurance policy incorrectly filled in by his mother, his two lives are about to collide, and there is nothing he can do to stop them…

Anne Fine’s perspective on the tangled web of familial relationships is hugely enjoyable, worryingly true, and disturbingly acute.

“splendid … clever, cruel and funny” – Evening Standard