Revolutionary turmoil in France threatens to cross the English border—and tear apart an increasingly tense marriage—in this “brilliant” gothic thriller (Publishers Weekly, starred review).
It is 1792, and Europe is seized by political unrest. In England, Lizzie Fawkes has grown up among Radicals who’ve followed the French Revolution with eager optimism. But Lizzie has recently married John Diner Tredevant, a developer who is heavily invested in Bristol’s housing boom, and he has everything to lose from social upheaval and the prospect of war. As the strain of financial setbacks and the secrets of his past converge upon him, his grip on what he considers his rightful property—including Lizzie—only grows tighter…From an Orange Prize winner and Whitbread Award finalist, this is a novel with a “charged radiance” (The New York Times) that explores romanticism and disillusionment, terror and love, and the dangerous lines between them.
“Dunmore knows how to let a narrative move like an arrow in flight…A man rows from Bristol to a glade where he has left his dead wife overnight. He must bury her fast, where no one will find her. From the start, Birdcage Walk has the command of a thriller as we keep company with John Diner Tredevant, an 18th-century property developer building a magnificent terrace in Clifton, high above the Avon Gorge. Lizzie, his second wife, does not know the details of what happened to his first. Nor do we know as much as we might suppose…The novel’s cast is marvelous and vivid.”—The Guardian
“Explores the impact of the French Revolution on 1790s England within the context of a gothic romance set in Bristol…[a] magnificently complex villain.”—Kirkus Reviews