Beautifully rendered and wryly observed, this novel touches on family, mental illness and the therapeutic properties of gardening. The broken, fragmented narrative brings to mind a cubist painting, but this is a portrait with surprising detail and depth; a powerful coming-of-age story which rewards the reader with the rich interior world of a mute girl.
When the garden's asleep for winter, when there's nothing to nurture, nothing to fight for or revive on the borders, when my mother has put away her tools and potting soil in our shed, that strange look of blank hunger takes up residence. These are the beginnings of Mugdays. Mugdays start with unpredictable and approximate mornings. Simple things, like getting out of bed and into some fresh clothes, eating and drinking, have to be gently negotiated, navigated and pleaded for.