Lonesome Reader reviews The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt

Eric Anderson reviews and writes about books on his blog Lonesome Reader. His review of The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt appeared in January. I was thrilled that my novel reminded Eric of Anna Smaill’s The Chimes, a novel I love (see my best reads of 2015 post for Aardvark Bureau/Gallic Books).

For [Lena], the rumblings of life are interpreted as a kind of music to her ears so that the sound of the sea roar is “basso profondo” and the engines of a ship beat “lentissimo.” In a more low-key sense, this sort of “music of the environment” reminds me so strongly of Anna Smaill’s inventive novel “The Chimes.” However, this is a novel driven more by voice and it’s Lena’s personality that steers it.
—Eric Anderson @lonesomereader


You can’t ask for more than a reader connecting with the character you’ve created:

There is something special about the character of Lena Gaunt that I strongly connected to…Like all great storytellers, all I wanted to do was pull up a chair and ardently listen for as long as she wanted to talk.
—Eric Anderson @lonesomereader


Read Lonesome Reader’s review of The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt


Updated to add: I was delighted to see that Eric included The Life and Loves of Lena Gaunt in his Baileys Prize 2016 Longlist Predictions (look at the company I’m in there!). Lena didn’t make the actual Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction longlist (find Eric’s take on the longlist here, and the shortlist on the Baileys Prize website here), but it was fabulous to be considered worthy by Eric (of the Bearded Baileys Book Club!).

See Lonesome Reader’s Baileys Prize 2016 Longlist Predictions