Home Fires by Elizabeth Day

Home Fires

Elizabeth Day

This is a beautifully written book which explores the harsh realities of war, as well as the aging process, and how the three main characters deal with this. Such subjects of loss and grief can be hard to read about, and indeed some parts make uncomfortable reading, but the different perspectives and flashes of humour make it a poignant and well-formed story.

Extract

When she opens the cupboard door she is assailed by the warm, fresh smell of washed linen. The shelves are scrupulously labelled with stickers on which she has written in clear, rounded lettering: sheets (double; single; fitted), pillowcases, towels. She laughs when she sees the stickers, she actually laughs .... Yes, the rest of her life is in chaos, Caroline thinks, but thank God my sheets and pillowcases are all in the right place .... As she walks down the stairs, two words stick in her mind, the letters whirling and bursting into flecks of light like fireworks studded against a night sky. Body armour .... For the first time in weeks, she feels a tiny spark of hope.

Parallels
  • The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers
  • The Return of the Soldier by Rebecca West
  • The Soldier's Return by Melvyn Bragg

Books with similar mood

Lea

Pascal Mercier

The House of Rajani

Alon Hilu

Psalm 119

Heather McRobie

Woman of the Ashes

Mia Couto

Where I Left My Soul

Jerome Ferrari

The Time of Light

Gunnar Kopperud

Blonde

Joyce Oates

Love in Exile

Bahaa Taher

Killing Johnny Fry: A Sexistential Novel

Walter Mosley

The Irresistable Inheritance of Wilberforce

Paul Torday

Afterlife

Sean O'Brien

Decoded

Mai Jia

Terra Nullius

Clare G. Coleman

The Jump Artist

Austin Ratner

Runt

Niall Griffiths

White Lies

Dexter Petley

By Battersea Bridge

Janet Davey

Sweet Hearts

Melanie Thon

A Golden Age

Tahmima Anam

House of Stone

Novuyo Rosa Tshuma

The Bleeding of the Stone

Ibrahim Al-Koni

Clara

Janice Galloway

Flood of Fire

Amitav Ghosh

Perlmann's Silence

Pascal Mercier

On Canaan's Side

Sebastian Barry

The Secret History of Costaguana

Juan Gabriel Vasquez

The Archivist's Story

Travis Holland

A Long Long Way

Sebastian Barry

Digging the Vein

Tony O'Neill

The Maid

Yasutaka Tsutsui

Seoul Survivors

Naomi Foyle

The Hunger and the Howling of Killian Lone

Will Storr

That Deadman Dance

Kim Scott

The Maid's Request

Michele Desbordes

The Prince's Boy

Paul Bailey

The Origin of Violence

Fabrice Humbert

Isabel and Rocco

Anna Stothard

Melmoth

Sarah Perry

Only Killers and Thieves

Paul Howarth

Time on my Hands

Giorgio Vasta

Birds Without Wings

Louis De Bernieres

The Masquerade

Nicholas Griffin

The Fixer

Max Kinnings

The Forest of Hours

Kerstin Ekman

Farewell, My Queen

Chantel Thomas

Day

A L Kennedy

The Narrow Road to the Deep North

Richard Flanagan

A Poet and Bin-Laden

Hamid Ismailov

How the Dead Dream

Lydia Millet