At times laugh out loud funny, often poignant and always engrossing, the reader inhabits the intense turmoil of Cleo and Frank’s relationship and the lives of those closest to them: lives lived flippantly and always on the verge of disaster. This novel has a hard honesty to it and contains scenes of sexual violence and self harm.
Cleo let herself be cajoled into meeting him in an hour, felt the relief tinged with resentment that came with doing what other people wanted her to do. She stood in front of her wardrobe, frozen. Just the act of picking something to wear felt insurmountable. Very slowly, she slipped on a pair of jeans. Good, that was half the work done. She picked up one of Frank’s cashmere sweaters and pulled it over her bare torso. It smelled of his cologne, tobacco leaf and spice, and another scent that was uniquely Frank. She tugged it off and put on one of her own sweaters instead. She looked at her shoes. It was bitterly cold outside, boots weather but she was not sure she could remember how to tie her laces. She pulled on thick socks and cautiously slid her feet into a pair of slip-on sneakers. She was doing well.