THE ZIGZAG WAY

Anita Desai

Eric is an uncertain, awkward young man, a would-be writer, and a traveller in spite of himself. Happy to follow his more confident girlfriend to Mexico, he is overwhelmed with sensory overload, but gradually seduced – by the strangeness, the colour, the mysteries of an older world. He finds himself on a curious quest for his own family in a ‘ghost’ mining town, now barely inhabited, where almost a hundred years earlier young Cornish miners worked the rich seams in the earth. On the D-a de los Muertos, the feast day when the locals celebrate and remember their dead, the various strands of the novel come together hauntingly, bringing together past and present in a moment of quiet, powerful epiphany.

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Shortlist announced - 21 Apr

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