Late in the Day (Hadley) - Book Reviews

Book Reviews
[B]rilliant and upsetting.… In the hands of a lesser novelist, the intricate tangle of lives at the center of Late in the Day might feel like… sly narrative machinations. Because this is Tessa Hadley, it instead feels earned and real and, even in its smallest nuances, important.… Hadley is adept at fluid omniscience, at storytelling that skims through the years as easily as it weaves through various points of view.… I'm not the first to compare [her] to Virginia Woolf… and Late in the Day calls to mind, in particular, Woolf's The Waves in its circling around a magnetic central character…whose absence becomes the book's main character.… It's in part Hadley's unflinching dissection of moments and states of consciousness that makes the Woolf comparisons irresistible, but it's also her commitment to following digressions both mental and philosophical… rather than pushing away at plot.…  It's to her great credit that Hadley manages to be old-fashioned and modernist and brilliantly postmodern all at once…unlocking age-old mysteries in ways both revelatory and inevitable. We've seen this before, and we've never seen this before, and it's spectacular.
Rebecca Makkai - New York Times Book Review

Gorgeous, utterly absorbing.… More than many of her contemporaries, the British writer Tessa Hadley understands that life is full of moments when the past presses up against the present, and when the present transforms the past. Her brilliant new novel, Late in the Day, explores both with equal urgency.
Boston Globe

[A] splendid, perceptive book.… Hadley has expertly examined the complications and intimacies of marriage and family in such novels as The Past, The Master Bedroom and Clever Girl. In Late in the Day she continues her persistent exploration of human frailty and resilience, moving easily between the present and the past to reveal the hard edges and silent compromises that shape all relationships.
Minneapolis Star Tribune

Tessa Hadley is well-known for her inimitable portrayal of character and her latest effort, Late in the Day, is no disappointment.… A smart exploration of human nature, desire, and friendship.
Vanity Fair

The British novelist does what she does best: excavate the tensions and traumas that linger in the most seemingly normal families and relationships.
Huffington Post

[P]erceptive, finely wrought…. Hadley is a writer of the first order, and this novel gives her the opportunity to explore, with profound incisiveness and depth, the inevitable changes inherent to long-lasting marriages.
Publishers Weekly

In the fine tradition of women's fiction by authors such as Margaret Drabble, Penelope Lively, and Rachel Cusk exploring relationships among the cultured classes, Hadley's place is secure. —Barbara Love, formerly with Kingston Frontenac P.L., Ont.
Library Journal

A four-person character study—here as always, Hadley is a master of interpersonal dynamics—the novel captures the complexity of loss. Their grief is not only for Zachary; it is for the lives they thought they knew. Restrained and tender.
Kirkus Reviews

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