The Detour by Gerbrand Bakker

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The Detour is a beautiful, oddly moving work of fiction, a quiet read that lingers long in the mind, like the ghosts that linger in our homes, and in the land around us.
-Guardian

Synopsis

This title is the winner of the Independent foreign fiction prize 2013. A Dutch woman rents a remote farm in rural Wales. She says her name is Emilie. She is a lecturer doing some research, and sets about making the farmhouse more homely. When she arrives there are ten geese living in the garden but one by one they disappear. Perhaps it's the work of a local fox. She has fled from an unbearable situation having recently confessed to an affair with one of her students. In Amsterdam, her stunned husband forms a strange partnership with a detective who agrees to help him trace her. They board the ferry to Hull on Christmas Eve. Back on the farm, a young man out walking with his dog injures himself and stays the night, then ends up staying longer. Yet something is deeply wrong. Does he know what he is getting himself into? And what will happen when her husband and the policeman arrive? Gerbrand Bakker has made the territories of isolation, inner turmoil and the solace offered by the natural world his own. The Detour is a deeply moving new novel, shot through with longing and the quiet tragedy of everyday lives.
 

About Gerbrand Bakker

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Gerbrand Bakker worked as a subtitler for nature films before becoming a gardener. His debut novel The Twin won the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and will soon be made into a film.
 
Published March 1, 2012 by Harvill Secker. 240 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Detour
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by John Burnside on Mar 15 2012

The Detour is a beautiful, oddly moving work of fiction, a quiet read that lingers long in the mind, like the ghosts that linger in our homes, and in the land around us.

Read Full Review of The Detour | See more reviews from Guardian

Toronto Star

Good
Reviewed by Emily Donaldson on Jul 05 2013

...Bakker takes his time confirming or denying our suspicions and even throws down a few red herrings along the way.

Read Full Review of The Detour | See more reviews from Toronto Star

Reader Rating for The Detour
85%

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