Jenn Ashworth

Jenn Ashworth

Jenn Ashworth was born in 1982 in Preston. She studied English at Cambridge and since then has gained an MA from Manchester University, trained as a librarian and run a prison library in Lancashire. She now lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Lancaster. Her first novel, A Kind of Intimacy, was published in 2009 and won a Betty Trask Award. In 2011 her second, Cold Light, was published by Sceptre and she was chosen by BBC's The Culture Show as one of the twelve Best New British Novelists. In 2013 her third novel, The Friday Gospels, was published to resounding critical acclaim. She lives in Lancaster with her husband, son and daughter.
Sceptre

The Friday Gospels

By Jenn Ashworth

It's Friday in the Leeke household, but this is no ordinary Friday: the Leekes are Lancastrian Mormons and tonight they will be welcoming back their son Gary from his two-year mission in Utah. His mother, Pauline, wants his homecoming to be perfect. Unfortunately, no one else seems to be following the script.

In turn, the members of the family let us into their private thoughts and plans. There's teenage Jeannie, wrestling with a disastrous secret; her peculiar elder brother, Julian, who's plotting an exit according to his own warped logic; their father, Martin, dreaming of escape; and 'golden boy' Gary, who dreads his return. Then there's Pauline, who needs a doctor's help but won't ask for it.

As the day progresses, a meltdown looms. Except that nothing goes according to anyone's plan, and the outcome is as unexpected as it is shocking. Laced with black humour and giving an unusual insight into the Mormon way of life, this is a superbly orchestrated and arresting tale of human folly and foibles and what counts in times of crisis.

Utterly, compulsively readable, [it] could be this award-winning young author's best novel yet.A serious, distinctive and eminently readable story of faith and family; about the demands of the world and the desires of the individual.Ashworth's most confident work yet and one that strengthens her reputation as an author worth watching.A serious novel seriously engaged with big themes. It is also very funny.It is rare to find a novel that is so complex, so damn clever and yet at once readable... a truly exceptional novel.Ashworth appears less interested in spreading a simple, comforting message than in uncovering the messy complexities of people, families and faith

The tale of an English Mormon family and the day the cracks in their lives yawn into chasms, as savagely funny as it is tragic.

Jenn Ashworth was born in 1982 in Preston. She studied English at Cambridge and since then has gained an MA from Manchester University, trained as a librarian and run a prison library in Lancashire. She now lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Lancaster. Her first novel, A Kind of Intimacy, was published in 2009 and won a Betty Trask Award. In 2011 her second, Cold Light, was published by Sceptre and she was chosen by BBC's The Culture Show as one of the twelve Best New British Novelists. In 2013 her third novel, The Friday Gospels, was published to resounding critical acclaim. She lives in Lancaster with her husband, son and daughter.A novel with an unusual hook - the tale of a dysfunctional English Mormon familyFantastic reviews and coverage in the press and on TV and radio.Mormons are topical with 'The Book of Mormon' on in the West End.Young, talented author - Jenn was chosen by the BBC's Culture Show as one of the 12 Best New British Novelists in 2011, and won a Betty Trask Award for her first.An author with international appeal - both her previous novels have sold to the USWill appeal to readers of ORANGES ARE NOT THE ONLY FRUIT and THE LAND OF DECORATION by Grace McCleen

The tale of an English Mormon family and the day the cracks in their lives yawn into chasms, as savagely funny as it is tragic.



It`s Friday in the Leeke household, but this is no ordinary Friday and the Leeke`s are a little unusual: they are Lancastrian Mormons, and this evening their son Gary will return from 2 years as a missionary in Salt Lake City.

His mother is planning a celebratory dinner - with difficulty, since she`s virtually housebound with an undiagnosed, embarrassing condition. What she doesn`t realise is that the rest of the family - her meek husband, disturbed oldest son, and teenage daughter - have other plans for the evening, each involving drastic and irrevocable action.



As the narrative baton passes from one Leeke to the next, disaster inexorably looms. Except that nothing goes according to plan, and the outcome is as unexpected as it is shocking. Giving a fascinating insight into the Mormon way of life, this blackly funny tale of innocence betrayed shows the havoc religion can wreak.

Jenn Ashworth was born in 1982. Her first novel, A KIND OF INTIMACY,
was published in 2009 and won a Betty Trask Award. It was followed by COLD LIGHT in 2011, when she was chosen as one of the 12 Best New British Novelists by BBC 2`s `Culture Show`. She lives in Preston, Lancashire with her family and writes an award-winning blog at www.jennashworth.co.uk

Sceptre

Cold Light

By Jenn Ashworth

I'm sitting on my couch, watching the local news. There's Chloe's parents, the mayor, the hangers on, all grouped round the pond for the ceremony. It's ten years since Chloe and Carl drowned, and they've finally chosen a memorial - a stupid summerhouse. The mayor has a spade decked out in pink and white ribbon, and he's started to dig.

You can tell from their faces that something has gone wrong. But I'm the one who knows straightaway that the mayor has found a body. And I know who it is.

This is the tale of three fourteen-year-old girls and a volatile combination of lies, jealousy and perversion that ends in tragedy. Except the tragedy is even darker and more tangled than their tight-knit community has been persuaded to believe.

Blackly funny and with a surreal edge to its portrait of a northern English town, Jenn Ashworth's gripping novel captures the intensity of girls' friendships and the dangers they face in a predatory adult world they think they can handle. And it shows just how far that world is willing to let sentiment get in the way of the truth.

Ashworth's novel is bleak and gritty, painting an uncompromising portrait of teenage life... In the best possible way this novel is an uncomfortable read.That most uncommon delight - a literary page-turner.Haunting...it is told by the hand of a true storyteller.Award-winning Jenn Ashworth leavens a bleak but pacey story with dry, wry humour, resulting in an extraordinarily perceptive and beautifully written novelA psychological thriller of the first order.A wonderful tale, beautifully told.Remember teenage bitching and insecurity? This book will take you back there, except with more lies and gruesome murder. Scarily believable.a chilling, blackly funny novel with a surreal edge about the intensity of teenage friendship.Another cleverly skewed tale told from the self-conscious perspective of an outsider... arrestingly observant... Ashworth's second book confirms that the first was no one-off... her talent could take her a long wayAn unsettling, darkly humorous tale of teenage girls in a predatory adult world, and a cocktail of lies, jealousy and unworldliness that leads to tragedy.Jenn Ashworth was born in 1982 in Preston. She studied English at Cambridge and since then has gained an MA from Manchester University, trained as a librarian and run a prison library in Lancashire. She now lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Lancaster. Her first novel, A Kind of Intimacy, was published in 2009 and won a Betty Trask Award. In 2011 her second, Cold Light, was published by Sceptre and she was chosen by BBC's The Culture Show as one of the twelve Best New British Novelists. In 2013 her third novel, The Friday Gospels, was published to resounding critical acclaim. She lives in Lancaster with her husband, son and daughter.A striking second novel by a young writer picked by The Culture Show as one of the 12 Best New British Writers in 2011.One of the most nominated titles for 2011's Not the Booker Prize (ie books which the public think should have been on the Booker longlist).Jenn's first novel won a Betty Trask Award, and was also picked for Not the Booker PrizeContender for the Orange Prize and all the under-35 prizes (John Llewellyn Rhys, Somerset Maugham, Sunday Times Young Writer etc).Rights already sold in the US and Germany.Great reviews in the press and on blogs
John Murray

Ghosts of Christmas Past

Neil Gaiman, M. R. James, Jenn Ashworth, E. Nesbit, Louis de Bernières, Muriel Spark, Frank Cowper, E. F. Benson, Bernard Capes, L. P. Hartley, Robert Aickman, Jerome K. Jerome, Kelly Link
Authors:
Neil Gaiman, M. R. James, Jenn Ashworth, E. Nesbit, Louis de Bernières, Muriel Spark, Frank Cowper, E. F. Benson, Bernard Capes, L. P. Hartley, Robert Aickman, Jerome K. Jerome, Kelly Link
Sceptre

Fell

Jenn Ashworth
Authors:
Jenn Ashworth

'Dark, compelling, beautifully written'Andrew Michael HurleyIn this eerie, atmospheric and mysterious tale, a woman returns to the house in Morecambe Bay where she grew up in the 1960s to find it falling apart, undermined by the roots of two huge sycamores. She is unaware that she has awoken the spirits of her parents, Jack and Nettie Clifford, who watch anxiously as their daughter Annette is overwhelmed by the state of the house and realise too late how far they neglected her as a child. As their memories come alive, the story unfolds of a crucial summer when Annette was 8 and Nettie became too ill to run their boarding house. The lodgers have to go - all except the newly arrived butcher's apprentice, because he seems to have miraculous healing powers and is Jack and Nettie's last, desperate hope. But is he who he says he is? Why do those he lays his hands on feel an erotic charge? And why does he despise his own gift? As everything comes to a head, so too does Annette's story in the present. But this time, someone is looking out for her and comes to her rescue. Finally, the spirits of her parents can let go.

Sceptre

A Kind of Intimacy

Jenn Ashworth
Authors:
Jenn Ashworth

Annie is obese, lonely and hopeful. Armed with self-help books, her cat and a collection of cow-shaped milk jugs, she moves into her new home and sets about getting to know the neighbours, especially the man next door. She ignores her neighbour's inconvenient girlfriend, but it's not quite as easy for Annie to dismiss her own past. As Annie's murky history of violence, secrets and sexual mishaps catches up with her, she cannot see that she has done anything wrong. She's just doing what any good neighbour would do, after all...

Sceptre

The Friday Gospels

Jenn Ashworth
Authors:
Jenn Ashworth

It's Friday in the Leeke household, but this is no ordinary Friday: the Leekes are Lancastrian Mormons and tonight they will be welcoming back their son Gary from his two-year mission in Utah. His mother, Pauline, wants his homecoming to be perfect. Unfortunately, no one else seems to be following the script. In turn, the members of the family let us into their private thoughts and plans. There's teenage Jeannie, wrestling with a disastrous secret; her peculiar elder brother, Julian, who's plotting an exit according to his own warped logic; their father, Martin, dreaming of escape; and 'golden boy' Gary, who dreads his return. Then there's Pauline, who needs a doctor's help but won't ask for it. As the day progresses, a meltdown looms. Except that nothing goes according to anyone's plan, and the outcome is as unexpected as it is shocking. Laced with black humour and giving an unusual insight into the Mormon way of life, this is a superbly orchestrated and arresting tale of human folly and foibles and what counts in times of crisis.

Sceptre

Cold Light

Jenn Ashworth
Authors:
Jenn Ashworth

I'm sitting on my couch, watching the local news. There's Chloe's parents, the mayor, the hangers on, all grouped round the pond for the ceremony. It's ten years since Chloe and Carl drowned, and they've finally chosen a memorial - a stupid summerhouse. The mayor has a spade decked out in pink and white ribbon, and he's started to dig.You can tell from their faces that something has gone wrong. But I'm the one who knows straightaway that the mayor has found a body. And I know who it is.This is the tale of three fourteen-year-old girls and a volatile combination of lies, jealousy and perversion that ends in tragedy. Except the tragedy is even darker and more tangled than their tight-knit community has been persuaded to believe.Blackly funny and with a surreal edge to its portrait of a northern English town, Jenn Ashworth's gripping novel captures the intensity of girls' friendships and the dangers they face in a predatory adult world they think they can handle. And it shows just how far that world is willing to let sentiment get in the way of the truth.(P)2011 Hodder & Stoughton

@jennashworth

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Jenn Ashworth's official website

Visit Jenn Ashworth's website to find out more about the author and her books, as well as projects, blog posts, and more.
BBC Two Culture Show

Jenn chosen as one of 12 best new novelists

Jenn Ashworth was chosen as one of twelve best new British novelists on BBC Two's The Culture Show. Watch the episode here.
A novel also about the power and pitfalls of narrative, it is told by the hand of a true storyteller.

The Independent

on COLD LIGHT

Featured in the Guardian

Jenn Ashworth: My Desktop

One of The Culture Show's top 12 best new novelists explains to the Guardian the method to the madness behind all her gadgets and apps, and why she has a folder called 'ego'.
Jenn Ashworth on the inspiration behind COLD LIGHT

What Happened Next?

Jenn Ashworth explores the ideas and scenes that sparked COLD LIGHT.
Prologue + Chapter One

COLD LIGHT, by Jenn Ashworth

Read the prologue and first chapter of Jenn Ashworth's compelling COLD LIGHT.