Music in the dark

£9.99

1884. In a tenement room and kitchen in the town of Rutherglen, near Glasgow, a woman with stark injuries to her face and her mind, and a man who has recently arrived from America, spend the night together. As the night progresses, the couple discover that their past lives were once entwined in ways they hadn’t realised, and that they are linked by a shared past; the eviction of Greenyards, Strathcarron in 1854. Separately and together the couple reflect on the shocking brutality of the glen’s clearance thirty years earlier, exploring notions of love, commitment, trauma and happiness, and discovering what it means to take care of another person’s soul.

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‘Wonderful and moving’ Clare Chambers

‘Utterly absorbing’ Sunday Post

SHORTLISTED FOR THE WINSTON GRAHAM HISTORICAL PRIZE
LONGLISTED FOR THE WALTER SCOTT PRIZE

Jamesina Ross is long finished with men. But one night a stranger seeking lodgings knocks on the door of her tenement flat. He doesn’t recognise her, but she remembers him at once. Not that she plans to mention it. She has no intention of trusting anyone enough to let herself be vulnerable again.

A lifetime ago, growing up in a Highland glen, Jamesina Ross wrote songs about the land and the kin who had worked it for generations. But her music was no match for the violence her community faced in the Highland Clearances. Jamesina has borne the disfigurements of that day ever since, on her face and inside her head. Her lodger thinks that if she would only dare to open the past, she might have the chance of a future.

This is a story about resilience, memory, resurrection – and those parts of who we are that nobody can take away.
A beautiful exploration of unlooked-for love in later life, its contrariness and its awkward, surprising joys, this is a story about resilience, memory, resurrection – and those parts of who we are that nobody can take away.

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Weight 0.26 kg
Dimensions 19.8 × 12.8 × 2.6 cm
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