International Fiction reviews

Asylum Road by Olivia Sudjic

Even after five years together the only time Luke and Anya are at ease in one another’s company is when they’re listening to true crime podcasts together. Driving from London to Provence for a romant…

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The Committed by Viet Thanh Nguyen

Viet Thanh Nguyen won the Pulitzer Prize in 2016 for his novel The Sympathizer and the titular character of that book returns here in The Committed. This time the Sympathizer has surfaced in Paris in…

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Light Perpetual by Francis Spufford

It starts with a bang. November 1944. A Saturday lunchtime on the Bexford high street, a fictional South London neighbourhood. There’s a buzz at Woolworths, the kind explained by wartime rationing: a…

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The Office of Historical Corrections: A Novella and Stories by Danielle Evans

Danielle Evans’s collection of short stories, The Office of Historical Corrections, has been much lauded in the US. The collection has been nominated for multiple prizes, and the New Yorker describes…

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The Prophets by Robert Jones Jr.

Though we’re only at the start of 2021, Robert Jones Jr.’s debut The Prophets already feels like one of the big books of the year. Set on an antebellum plantation in the deep south of Mississippi, Th

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Fake Accounts by Lauren Oyler

I know it takes years for a book to be written, edited and printed, but Lauren Oyler’s debut novel Fake Accounts feels so immediate that it’s hard to believe it wasn’t written last week and just beam…

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A Town Called Solace by Mary Lawson

It’s wonderful to start the year reading a novel that’s tender, well-written and hard to put down. This book is set in rural Toronto in 1972, and the landscape and weather affect the mood of the stor…

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The First Woman by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi

1970s Uganda: halfway through Idi Amin’s terrible reign. The First Woman details the coming of age of Kirabo, a headstrong young woman from a small Ugandan village who begins to feel the terrible abs…

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Milk Fed by Melissa Broder

Milk Fed, Melissa Broder’s latest novel (following The Pisces), is a funny, sexy feast of a story about indulgence, self-denial and female love. Rachel is a bored, lonely and cynical atheistic Jewish…

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A Net For Small Fishes by Lucy Jago

Last year’s big historical fiction release was Hilary Mantel’s hefty conclusion to her brilliant Tudor-era trilogy The Mirror and the Light. This year’s could well be historian Lucy Jago’s A Net for

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