A beautiful, lambent, timely novel that admits our worst capacities while insisting on accountability and our ability to improve. Andrew Miller is among those brave male writers steering a progressive course. Yet he remains, as ever, unique, visionary, a master at unmasking humanity.
The theme is handled in a way that is bolder and more exquisitely menacing than anything he's done before . . . It's all real, and all fictional, gorgeously so. You read what might have been a perfectly commonplace story of failure and redemption with your pulse racing, all your senses awake. Miller's last novel didn't make the Booker list, but this restrained, beautifully written apologia for our common frailty surely should.
I spent the first half of The Slowworm's Song in a sort of ecstasy, marvelling at Miller's masterful characterisation; his confident evocation of army life and sensitive depiction of the Troubles; the nuanced exploration of alcoholism; the clean, well-made prose style studded with moments of descriptive beauty . . . Stephen is an unforgettable character, and Miller has pulled off the miraculous feat of sketching a full human life in a few hundred pages.
The focused interiority of Stephen's narration, together with the slowburning fuse of a plot, make for a quiet intensity that stretches the nerves . . . this empathic and artful novel is about both the mysteries we are to ourselves, and the power of speech
Gorgeously written . . . it approaches the Troubles from a unique angle . . . Since his debut, Ingenious Pain, Miller has shown a knack for historical immersion, and he continues to excel in it here.
It's difficult not to be moved by Stephen's heartfelt words as he comes face to face with what happened in that 1982 summer.
The multiple award-winning author of Pure returns with a tender, compelling and exquisitely written novel of extraordinary power...Exploring a brutal chapter in the unhappy and sometimes shameful history of Northern Ireland, this wonderful novel is also a story of atonement and redemption.