Sorrow and Bliss by Meg Mason
A brilliantly faceted and extremely funny book that engulfed me in the way I am always hoping to be engulfed by novels. I was making a list of all the people I wanted to send it to, until I realised that I wanted to send it to everyone I know'Ann Patchett'Patrick Melrose meets Fleabag. Brilliant'Clare Chambers'It will shatter your heart, before mending it with infinite love.
I've never read anything like it and will be pressing it into the hands of every reader I know'Pandora Sykes'An incredibly funny and devastating debut'Guardian'Brutal, tender, funny, this novel - a portrait of love in all of its many incarnations - came alive for me from the very first page. I am changed by this book'Mary Beth Keane, author of Ask Again, Yes'Nina Stibbe meets Fleabag'Daily Express Everyone tells Martha Friel she is clever and beautiful, a brilliant writer who has been loved every day of her adult life by one man, her husband Patrick. A gift, her mother once said, not everybody gets.
So why is everything broken? Why is Martha - on the edge of 40 - friendless, practically jobless and so often sad? And why did Patrick decide to leave?Maybe she is just too sensitive, someone who finds it harder to be alive than most people. Or maybe - as she has long believed - there is something wrong with her. Something that broke when a little bomb went off in her brain, at 17, and left her changed in a way that no doctor or therapist has ever been able to explain.
Forced to return to her childhood home to live with her dysfunctional, bohemian parents (but without the help of her devoted, foul-mouthed sister Ingrid), Martha has one last chance to find out whether a life is ever too broken to fix - or whether, maybe, by starting over, she will get to write a better ending for herself.