She is sailing. She is alone. Ahead of her is the world's curve and beyond that, everything else. The known, the imagined, the imagined known. Who else has entered Tim's life the way Maud did? This girl who fell past him, lay seemingly dead on the ground, then stood and walked. That was where it all began. He wants her - wants to rescue her, to reach her. Yet there is nothing to suggest Maud has any need of him, that she is not already complete. A woman with a talent for survival, who works long hours and loves to sail - preferably on her own. A woman who, when a crisis comes, will turn to the sea for refuge, embarking on a voyage that will test her to the utmost, that will change everything ...From the Costa Award-winning author of Pure comes a viscerally honest, hypnotic portrait of modern love and motherhood, the lure of the sea and the ultimate unknowability of others. This pitch-perfect novel confirms Andrew Miller's position as one of the finest writers of his generation.
Told in his usual exquisite prose, the story centres on the strangely reticent character of Maud, who leaves the West Country after a tragedy and bravely attempts to single-handedly sail across the Atlantic. You know you're going to like a character when, in the first few pages, she falls 20ft in a boatyard, then gets up and tries to walk. Infused with nautical detail and the cool brine of the sea, this is perfect summer reading. -- Sarah Hall Observer We readers have a most fabulous time... The story of Tim's narcissism, self-deception and deception, and of the chiming treacheries of his friends and family, is rich and delicate enough to have sufficed for most contemporary novels...[the finale] guarantees that Maud, and questions about Maud, will linger in your mind long after you close this remarkable novel -- Kate Clanchy Guardian Hypnotic... Andrew Miller has a poet's ear but he can also write white-knuckle passages that will leave you winded by towering waves. Most surprising of all, you'll find yourself rooting for Maud as she confronts the limits of her own detachment -- Hephzibah Anderson Mail on Sunday Visceral and exquisitely written... few characters are so neutrally, impassively masterful. In her silence she is magnificent...the grand solitude of the sea passage, dialogue-free and with a punchy simplicity reminiscent of Hemingway, follows on beautifully from the judgment of those on land...Miller, wisely, hardly analyses Maud. But the portrayal of this practical, disconcerting figure is wildly emotional ***** -- Philippa Williams Lady Achieves a kind of hallucinatory strangeness, simultaneously intriguing and disturbing -- Alex Clark Spectator Part relationship study, part sailing yarn, this odd yet enthralling book lingers long in the mind. -- Neville Hawcock Books of the Year, Financial Times A beautiful novel; moving, funny, mysterious and compelling. Maud is a stunning creation - a great modern heroine with a pure ancient heart Patrick Marber
Andrew Miller's first novel, Ingenious Pain, was published by Sceptre in 1997 and greeted as the debut of an outstanding new writer. It won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the Grinzane Cavour Prize for the best foreign novel published in Italy. It was followed by Casanova, then Oxygen, which was shortlisted for both the Booker Prize and the Whitbread Novel of the Year Award in 2001, The Optimists, and One Morning Like A Bird. In 2011, his sixth novel, Pure, was published to great acclaim and went on to win the Costa Book of the Year Award. Andrew Miller's novels have been translated into thirty languages. Born in Bristol in 1960, he has lived in Spain, Japan, France and Ireland, and currently lives in Somerset.