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Bitter (Hardback)
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Bitter (Hardback)

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£14.99
Hardback 352 Pages / Published: 08/03/2018
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LONGLISTED FOR THE HWA DEBUT CROWN 2018

'Brilliantly paced, moving, thoughtful and sharp. Loved it.' Renee Knight, author of Disclaimer

'Bitter, yes, but also sweet - and moving, and searching, and quietly devastating: a novel to detonate the heart' A.J. Finn, author of The Woman in the Window

'Wonderful . . . It's a very painful story but told with a kind of lightness and grace. Francesca Jakobi completely inhabits Gilda, in all her pain and obsession, all her self-deception and self-sabotage. An absolutely astonishing first novel' Michael Frayn, author of Spies

'Bitter is stormingly good, deliciously addictive, as gripping as Zoe Heller's Notes on A Scandal. It's got to be the beach read of 2018!' Peter Bradshaw, Guardian Film Critic

'Gloriously sinister and yet heartbreaking. Brilliant' Nicci Cloke, author of Close Your Eyes

It's 1969, and while the summer of love lingers in London, Gilda is consumed by the mistakes of her past. She walked out on her beloved son Reuben when he was just a boy and fears he'll never forgive her.

When Reuben marries a petite blonde gentile, Gilda takes it as the ultimate rejection. Her cold, distant son seems transformed by love - a love she's craved his entire adult life. What does his new wife have that she doesn't? And how far will she go to find out? It's an obsession that will bring shocking truths about the past to light . . .

Bitter is a beautiful and devastating novel about the decisions that define our lives, the fragility of love and the bond between mother and son.

Publisher: Orion Publishing Co
ISBN: 9781474607568
Number of pages: 352
Weight: 1 g
Dimensions: 251 x 157 x 33 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Bitter by Francesca Jakobi is stormingly good, deliciously addictive, as gripping as Zoe Heller's Notes on a Scandal. It's got to be the beach read of 2018! -- Peter Bradshaw, Guardian Film Critic
BITTER is just wonderful. It's a very painful story but told with a kind of lightness and grace. It's so well-written, with such deceptive directness and simplicity, so well-organised and well-paced. Francesca Jakobi completely inhabits Gilda, in all her pain and obsession, all her self-deception and self-sabotage. An absolutely astonishing first novel -- Michael Frayn, author of SPIES

I bloody loved this book. It was emotionally so intense, so addictive, I tore through it, unable to stop. Buy it. Read it

-- Susie Steiner, author of MISSING, PRESUMED and PERSONS UNKNOWN
Provocative and skilful . . . The results are as hilarious as they are unsettling as Jakobi exploits the stereotype of the needy Jewish mother and we are drawn against our better judgment to side with out-of-control Gilda -- Barry Forshaw * GUARDIAN *
Jakobi's debut is ambitious in scope, investigating her central character in forensic detail, with short, pacy chapters that alternate between past and present . . . At once tragic and engrossing, this gimlet-eyed character study elicits sympathy and damnation, both for Gilda herself and for the circumstances that have defined her' * FINANCIAL TIMES *
[A] riveting study of a woman who takes motherly concern to rather sinister extremes . . . it slowly, tantalisingly becomes clear that Gilda has never been in charge of her life . . . and shocking secrets from her past will have the power to transform her present * Daily Mail *
Brilliantly paced, moving, thoughtful and sharp. Loved it -- Renee Knight, author of DISCLAIMER
Bitter, yes, but also sweet -- and moving, and searching, and quietly devastating: a novel to detonate the heart. Steep yourself in this exquisite story. You won't regret it, and you won't forget it. Fans of Gail Honeyman and Joanna Cannon will love Bitter * A.J. Finn, author of THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW *
Gloriously sinister and yet, when you least expect it, quietly heartbreaking. Brilliant -- Nicci Cloke, author of CLOSE YOUR EYES
A moving, powerful story of love, obsession, guilt, lies and the lengths we'll go to for a second chance -- Tammy Cohen
'I loved this book so much. Really moving and completely absorbing - I loved Gilda's voice' -- Laura Marshall, author of FRIEND REQUEST
This is an original and heartbreaking novel - beautifully written with such a powerful voice. I couldn't put it down -- Chloe Mayer, author of THE BOY MADE OF SNOW
A beautiful, poignant and - at times - unsettling insight into motherhood: its triumphs and disappointments but, above all, its power to transform relationships. I loved it -- Elisa Lodato, author of AN UNREMARKABLE BODY
Compelling and, in places, heartbreaking. A beautiful portrait of a mother's love -- Joanna Barnard, author of PRECOCIOUS and HUSH LITTLE BABY
I hated Gilda at first, her judgemental, mean spirited view of the world. She seemed to be the kind of person I would run from at parties. Then, as time went on, this woman felt no longer bitter, but like someone I had come to love. Such clever storytelling . . . By the end I was running towards the finish line, desperate to see her come through -- Amanda Smyth, author of BLACK ROCK and A KIND OF EDEN
Beautifully written and paced. I was hooked - heart in mouth from the beginning. Exquisite storytelling * Sally Magnusson, author of THE SEALWOMAN'S GIFT *

BITTER is an incredible book about familial love gone wrong: deeply felt, subtly wrought and deliciously complicated

-- Rachel Heng, author of SUICIDE CLUB
It's not easy to make a reader fall in love with a character who is as flawed as Gilda. She is difficult, snooty, and unhinged - and I absolutely adored her. She deserves to take her place beside character greats such as Olive Kitteridge and Eleanor Oliphant . . . Although this is an incredibly moving book - I sobbed my way through the final 30 pages - there are some wonderfully funny moments too. Bitter has left me with one of the most severe book hangovers I've ever experienced. It's a masterpiece -- Fiona Mitchell, author of The Maid's Room
A beautiful and original story. I absolutely loved it -- Clare Empson, author of HIM
Jakobi's imagery transports you from bombed London streets to the anything goes vibes at the end of the swinging '60s . . . a terrifying and poignant portrait of a lonely woman **** -- Jennifer Platt * SOUTH AFRICAN SUNDAY TIMES *
BITTER hits every single one of my must-reads. An incredibly well-drawn, flawed female lead character; a 1960s setting and an unsettling yet realistic family dynamic . . . BITTER is deeply moving and so very wise. I absolutely adored it -- Anne Cater * Random Things Through My Letterbox *
Compelling and, in places, heartbreaking. A beautiful portrait of a mother's love -- Joanna Barnard, author of PRECOCIOUS and HUSH LITTLE BABY

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“Beautifully tragic.”

Following the story of Gilda, a German immigrant who moved as a child to England. Now, Gilda is feeling lonely, her only son has just married and she's finding herself jealous of beautiful waiflike Alice, her new... More

Hardback edition
26th May 2018
Helpful? Upvote 7

“The all consuming love of a mother...”

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Original, moving, slightly sinister and with a dash of dark humour – just my kinda read! It’s narrated to us by Gilda during 1969. Gilda is only in her fifties but has had the life... More

“A reflection of the times...”

Firstly, thank you to the publishers for this surprise review copy. I had seen the book advertised and loved the cover so it was already on my radar.
The book is a reflection of how some aspects of life were around... More

Hardback edition
7th March 2018
Helpful? Upvote 6

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