LONGLISTED FOR THE BAILEYS PRIZE FOR FICTION 2017 'Finely judged writing like this comes from a place of instinct, and it marks Melrose out as someone to watch . . . Midwinter is a great success' Melissa Harrison, Guardian Father and Son, Landyn and Vale Midwinter, are Suffolk farmers, living together on land their family has worked for generations. But they are haunted there by a past they have long refused to confront: the death of Cecelia, beloved wife and mother, when Vale was just a child. Both men have carried her loss, unspoken. Until now. With the onset of a mauling winter, something between them snaps. While Vale makes increasingly desperate decisions, Landyn retreats, finding solace in the land, his animals - and a vixen who haunts the farm and seems to bring with her both comfort and protection. Tender and lyrical, alive to language and nature, Midwinter is a novel about guilt, blame, lost opportunities and, ultimately, it is a story about love and the lengths we will go to find our way home. Longlisted for the New Angle Prize 2017 'Melrose elegantly weaves narratives detailing the men's internal tumult with lush descriptions of their natural surroundings . . . A moving story about the cruelty of chance, modern masculinity and the transformative power of the bonds between men' Financial Times 'I have rarely read a narrative voice as distinctive as Landyn's, and the loving depiction of regional English working-class masculinity is unusual and timely . . . This is certainly not a light-hearted book, but it offers the true consolation of some very good writing' Sarah Moss, TLS 'A penetrating study of grief and guilt' Daily Mail
The opening scenes of Fiona Melrose's debut, Midwinter , could hardly be more gripping ; but the novel she hangs on the hook of that action-packed beginning is something quieter, broader, and more considered than it initially gives you reason to expect . . . Finely judged writing like this comes from a place of instinct, and it marks Melrose out as someone to watch . . . Midwinter is a great success . The Guardian, Book of the Day
Fiona Melrose was born in Johannesburg but has spent the majority of her adult life in the UK, first in London and then in East Anglia. She moved to Suffolk to concentrate on her writing and it is there that Midwinter was conceived. Previously Fiona has worked in academia, NGO´s, public affairs and as an emerging markets analyst. She continues to keep a foot in both continents and is currently spending the majority of her time back in South Africa where she is completing her second novel.