The Melody

Jim Crace

3.17 based on 549 ratings & 130 reviews on Goodreads.com
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07 February 2019
9781509841387
288 pages
Synopsis

From the Man Booker shortlisted author of Harvest.

Alfred Busi, famed in his town for his music and songs, is mourning the recent death of his wife and quietly living out his days in the large villa he has always called home. Then one night Busi is attacked by a creature he disturbs as it raids the contents of his larder. Busi is convinced that what assaulted him was no animal, but a child, ‘innocent and wild’, and his words fan the flames of old rumour – of an ancient race of people living in the bosk surrounding the town – and new controversy: the town’s paupers, the feral wastrels at its edges, must be dealt with. Once and for all.

Lyrical and warm, intimate and epic, The Melody by Jim Crace tracks the few days that will see Busi and the town he loves altered irrevocably. This is a story about grief and ageing, about reputation and the loss of it, about love and music and the peculiar way myth seeps into real life. And it is a political novel too – a rallying cry to protect those we persecute.

'The Melody takes its place among his finest [novels] . . . an ecological fable for modern times' Guardian

Strange, unsettling, brilliant . . . one of our most original and inventive novelists

Observer

Seductively atmospheric . . . deeply moving

Daily Mail

Takes its place among his finest [novels] . . . grippingly symbolic and intensely real

Guardian