Things Bright and Beautiful (Hardback)Anbara Salam (author)
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'A claustrophobic compelling read that'll suck you into its heart of darkness' Independent
When Bea Hanlon follows her preacher husband Max to a remote island in the Pacific, she soon sees that their mission will bring anything but salvation...
Advent Island is a place beyond the reaches of Bea's most fitful imaginings. It's not just the rats and the hordes of mosquitos and the weevils in the powdered milk. Past the confines of their stuffy little house, amidst the damp and the dust and the sweltering heat, rumours are spreading of devil chasers who roam the island on the hunt for evil spirits. And then there are the noises from the church at night.
Yet, to the amusement of the locals and the bafflement of her husband, Bea gradually adapts to life on the island. But with the dreadful events heralded by the arrival of an unexpected, wildly irritating and always-humming house guest, Advent Island becomes a hostile place once again. And before long, trapped in the jungle and in the growing fever of her husband's insanity, Bea finds herself fighting for her freedom, and for her life.
'I was sucked into its dark beating heart and wasn't spat out until I'd turned the final page' Claire Fuller'
'Dark, mysterious, beguiling, and beautifully written. It transported me to a different world' Dolly Alderton
'An excellent, blackly funny debut ... a novel whose growing environmental and psychological horrors you can feel crawling across your skin' Daily Mail
***Independent debut of the summer***
***Stylist must-read books of 2018***
***Metro Best New Books by BME Authors***
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Number of pages: 288
Weight: 428 g
Dimensions: 222 x 138 x 28 mm
This book is so rich in detail, the rainforest so immersive, and the characters so wonderfully odd, that I was sucked into its dark beating heart and wasn't spat out until I'd turned the final page * Claire Fuller *
Darkly comic and thrilling * Elle Magazine *
What a hot and sticky, feverishly Lord Of The Flies-style debut! The whole novel excels in rich detail - I wouldn't be surprised if English teachers use it as a masterclass in descriptive prose * The Pool *
A claustrophobic compelling read that'll suck you into its heart of darkness * Independent *
The book abounds with lurid descriptive passages revelling in tropical ickiness ... competent and assured * Irish Times *
Phenomenally disturbing . . . With consummate imagination and technical flair, Salam contrives a crescendo of queasiness that reaches a 'tumult of madness' and manages to make Somerset Maugham's 'Rain' seem like a picnic * The Spectator *
An excellent, blackly funny debut ... a novel whose growing environmental and psychological horrors you can feel crawling across your skin * Daily Mail *
A vivid account . . . The island setting and the rainforest are compellingly evoked, along with the claustrophobic backdrop of religious mania and a dysfunctional marriage - an impressive debut * Penelope Lively *
Thrilling . . . oozing with vivid descriptions and a deeply claustrophobic atmosphere, this debut is quite unlike anything else you'll read this year * Heat World *
Delves in directions you won't see coming, swallowing you like the darkness of the jungle, with a captivating narrative brimming with wonder, trepidation and wit * Foyles Newsletter *
Examining the true nature of religious missions and a marriage in crisis, this is a vividly drawn and powerful novel * Stylist *
A richly textured novel. Darkly humorous and atmospheric, this debut about fanaticism and marital crisis is one to watch out for * Book Riot *
Atmospheric * i *
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“Strange tale of island life”
Things Bright and Beautiful
by Anbara Salam
Pub Date: 05 Apr 2018
Sam W, Reviewer
Last updated on 01 Mar 2018
I Recommend This Book
Imagine the films South Pacific,... More
“Escape to the island...from your darkest imagination..”
It took me a while after I’d read this novel to realise what I thought about it. It fascinated and annoyed me at different times during my time on Advent Island, a fictional place thank goodness, where the book is... More
Anbara Salam’s debut novel is an atmospheric and powerful tale. Pastor Max and his wife Bea have moved to a South Sea Island, where Max is the new missionary for the church.
The claustrophobic atmosphere of the island... More
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