My Phantoms

Author(s): Gwendoline Riley

General Fiction

From the novelist hailed as one of Britain's best working authors (TLS) comes an end of life reckoning with a toxic mother-daughter bond, grief, and the damage done throughout the years.

Helen Grant is a mystery to her two daughters. Growing up, Bridget and her older sister Michelle were kept at a distance by their mom's caginess and flair for the dramatic. Meanwhile, their Saturdays were spent with their father, a serial liar whose boasts and bluster were exhausting.

Now Bridget is an academic in her forties. She sees her mother once a year for a shared birthday dinner, they text occasionally about Mad Men and Ferrante to feign a shared interest, and they have settled into a strained peace. But when Helen makes it clear that she wants more, it seems Bridget's childhood struggle will have to be replayed. And as it becomes clear that her mother's life might end sooner than she thinks, Bridget struggles to know what forgiveness entails, and whether it's possible to find meaning in a vanishing past and a relationship that never was.


Here is another absolute gem from the queen of taut and terse writing. Casting her crystalline gaze to a disturbing mother and daughter relationship, Riley writes of domestic realms and the inner worlds of her characters with a kind of flaying open wit, perceptiveness and observation. The relationships and physical spaces of the novel are claustrophobic in intensity, but the writing so intimate and snappy that it contains multitudes. This is a fine portrait of a complex interdependence, all taking place in a familiar and industrial Liverpool. A lumnious read. Molly


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Product Information

General Fields

  • : 9781783783267
  • : Granta Books
  • : Granta Books
  • : May 2021
  • : {"length"=>["21.6"], "width"=>["13.8"], "units"=>["Centimeters"]}
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 208
  • : English
  • : Hardback
  • : Gwendoline Riley