Gavin and Hannah Eastwood are on holiday with their small son, Giles, in Belgium. Secure, prosaic, a little complacent perhaps, but generous, kind and very sensible about their over-protective feelings for their son.
The holiday is interrupted by Melissa, a student of Gavin’s, so infatuated by him that she has followed the Eastwoods to Begium — her presence brings the predictable amount of irritation and embarrassment that teenagers in love with older, married men usually do.
An appalling tragedy ensues. But it is not what you might expect.
‘In its unity of time, place and action, the novel achieves a strangely magnified effect, an intensity that grows with each plain unintense statement’ Financial Times