In a lush meadow, bounded by dense forest and a sparkling river, the flags of several tents flutter in the breeze, rich with the promise of halcyon days. Yet all is not as tranquil as it may seem: the balance of power wrought between the occupants of The Great Field, as it is properly known, is a delicate one, and relationships are stretched to breaking point when a new, large and disciplined group offers to share its surplus of milk pudding. Only the narrator acknowledges the gesture, but by forging links with the newcomers he becomes a conduit for change, change that threatens The Great Field.
Magnus Mills is the author of A Cruel Bird Came to the Nest and Looked In and six other novels, including The Restraint of Beasts, which won the McKitterick Prize and was shortlisted for both the Booker Prize and the Whitbread (now the Costa) First Novel Award in 1999. His most recent novel, A Cruel Bird Came to the Nest and Looked In, was published to great critical acclaim. His books have been translated into twenty languages. He lives in London.