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The WD Book Club - Late in the Day


The Wild Detectives

Our next pick is Late in the Day, by British author Tessa Hadley.

The lives of two close-knit couples are irrevocably changed by an untimely death. Alexandr and Christine and Zachary and Lydia have been friends since they first met in their twenties. Thirty years later, Alex and Christine are spending a leisurely summer’s evening at home when they receive a call from a distraught Lydia: she is at the hospital. Zach is dead.

In the wake of this profound loss, the three friends find themselves unmoored; all agree that Zach, with his generous, grounded spirit, was the irreplaceable one they couldn’t afford to lose. Inconsolable, Lydia moves in with Alex and Christine. But instead of loss bringing them closer, the three of them find over the following months that it warps their relationships, as old entanglements and grievances rise from the past, and love and sorrow give way to anger and bitterness.

“Reading Late in the Day feels both prurient–we are so deeply inside the emotional rhythms of this home–and marvelous, in its elevation of a boring middle-class marriage into a fable of warring identities.” –New Republic

“Tessa Hadley is well-known for her inimitable portrayal of character and her latest effort, Late in the Day, is no disappointment…. A smart exploration of human nature, desire, and friendship.” –Vanity Fair

“Perceptive, finely wrought…. Hadley is a writer of the first order, and this novel gives her the opportunity to explore, with profound incisiveness and depth, the inevitable changes inherent to long-lasting marriages.” –Publishers Weekly

“[Hadley] is a gifted anatomist of human relationships, with those among family members being her specialty. Her particular genius lies in the elegance and precision with which she captures the fleeting emotion, the passing, indefinable perception or tiny epiphany.” –Katherine Powers , Wall Street Journal

Late in the Day explores the complex webs at the center of our most intimate relationships, to expose how, beneath the seemingly dependable arrangements we make for our lives, lie infinite alternate configurations. Ingeniously moving between past and present and through the intricacies of her characters’ thoughts and interactions, Tessa Hadley once again “crystallizes the atmosphere of ordinary life in prose somehow miraculous and natural” (Washington Post).

Tessa Hadley is the author of six highly acclaimed novels, including Clever Girland The Past, as well as three short-story collections, most recently Bad Dreams and Other Stories, which won the Edge Hill Short Story Prize. Her stories appear regularly in The New Yorker; in 2016 she was awarded the Windham Campbell Prize and the Hawthornden Prize. She lives in London.

As always, Book Club members (meaning you just show up) will enjoy a 10% discount on the next book club title and on every item they’ll ask for at the bar during the Book Club meeting.

Let’s meet up and talk Literature.

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