Set in 1940s London, this story follows four characters – Kay, Helen, Viv and Duncan – as they deal with their everyday lives, set against the backdrop of World War Two.
Shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction
Shortlisted for the Orange Prize and the Booker Prize
‘Brilliantly done . . . the period detail never overwhelms the simple, passionate human story. It’s a tour-de-force of hints, clues and dropped threads’ Suzi Feay, Independent on Sunday
Moving back through the 1940s, through air raids, blacked out streets, illicit liaisons, sexual adventure, to end with its beginning in 1941, The Night Watch is the work of a truly brilliant and compelling storyteller.
This is the story of four Londoners – three women and a young man with a past, drawn with absolute truth and intimacy. Kay, who drove an ambulance during the war and lived life at full throttle, now dresses in mannish clothes and wanders the streets with a restless hunger, searching . . . Helen, clever, sweet, much-loved, harbours a painful secret . . . Viv, glamour girl, is stubbornly, even foolishly loyal, to her soldier lover . . . Duncan, an apparent innocent, has had his own demons to fight during the war. Their lives, and their secrets connect in sometimes startling ways. War leads to strange alliances . . .
Tender, tragic and beautifully poignant, set against the backdrop of feats of heroism both epic and ordinary, here is a novel of relationships that offers up subtle surprises and twists. The Night Watch is thrilling. A towering achievement.