The Sweetness of Water by Nathan Harris
Farmer George Walker and his wife Isabelle are reeling from a loss that has shaken them to their core. After a chance encounter, they agree to employ the brothers on their land, and slowly the tentative bonds of trust begin to blossom between the strangers.
But this sanctuary survives on a knife's edge, and it isn't long before a tragedy causes the inhabitants of the nearby town to turn their suspicion onto these new friendships, with devastating consequences.
"The Sweetness of Water is a fine, lyrical novel, impressive at the level of the sentence, and in its complex interweaving of the grand and the intimate, of the personal and political. In presenting two narratives largely overlooked in traditional renderings of the war, Harris breathes new life into a period of history whose stories have grown stale with overtelling." ― Observer
"An insightful first novel... [a] highly accomplished debut ― Sunday Times
"This debut novel astonished us as much for its wise, lyrical voice as for its dense realisation of a fictional small town in the American South at a rarely written about moment... We were incredibly impressed by the way it probes themes of trans-historical importance - about race, sexuality, violence and grief - through meticulously-drawn characters and a patient examination of their relationships." ― The Booker Prize Judges
"In the right hands, historical fiction can often capture the truth of our own times more successfully than many contemporary attempts. . . Readers will often forget that this is a debut novel; one of Harris's greatest gifts, aside from those beautifully wrought sentences, is his empathy, his ability to slip inside the skins of these men and women . . . in his unsparing examination of both hatred and deep love, Harris will win over the hearts of many readers." ― Financial Times
Publisher: Tinder Press