It's 2019 in Sudleigh, a market town not far from the south coast. It's not a bad place to live, provided the new housing development doesn't ruin it, but most residents are too caught up in their own grudges, sores and struggles to notice. Gap-year Tom is cleaning toilets but finding unexpected solace in his Chinese house-share. Former lounge musician Frank wants to pass his carpet business to his nephew Josh, killing the boy's dream to become a chef. Sharp-elbowed phone-sex operator Heather will stop at nothing to become manager of the golf club. Miss Bennett keeps putting her house on the market when she doesn't want to move. Do they all know how their lives are linked? And will creative writing tutor Tony, hard at work on his ironic pseudo-children's book The Jazz Cats, ever pluck up the courage to leave his unappreciative girlfriend Lydia? Meticulously observed, with flashes of wicked comedy, We Need to Talk offers a jigsaw puzzle of unwitting connections for the reader to assemble. The finished picture is an unflinchingly honest portrait of multi-jobbing, gig-economy Middle England on the eve of Covid.
Publisher: Eye Books
Number of pages: 272
Weight: 225 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 16 mm
'A hymn to the mundane, as intricately crafted as an Ayckbourn play. A brilliant first novel' - Ailsa Cox, 'Jonathan Crane exposes the new heart of England. A beautifully paced, gossipy, moving novel about a divided nation drifting out of touch with itself' - Matthew De Abaitua, 'Paints a picture of Middle England on the eve of the coronavirus pandemic, told through a series of wonderful, unexpected characters and their interconnected lives. It's a very rewarding read' - Georgina Godwin, Monocle Reads, 'A series of small and tall tales of people who are all entwined, with some glorious moments as well as some very touching ones. I really enjoyed having a peek behind the curtain at all these amazing characters. Jonathan Crane is a wonderful writer' - Tony Fisher, BBC Essex