A brilliantly perceptive, painfully true and funny journey deep into one family’s foibles, from the 1950s right up to the changed world of today.
When the kids are grown and Mercy Garrett gradually moves herself out of the family home, everyone is determined not to notice. Over at her studio, she wants space and silence. She won’t allow any family clutter. Not even their cat, Desmond. Yet it is a clutter of untidy moments that forms the Garretts’ family life over the decades, whether that’s a painstaking Easter lunch or giving a child a ride, a fateful train journey or an unexpected homecoming. And it all begins in 1959, with a family holiday to a cabin by a lake.
It’s the only one the Garretts will ever take, but its effects will ripple through the generations.
‘Gorgeous, charming, profound, and written with such lightness of touch’ MARIAN KEYES
‘A perfect work of fiction’ MEG MASON
‘French Braid is Anne Tyler at her surgical, spare best’ NIGELLA LAWSON
‘Exquisitely crafted, tender, hilarious, devastatingly precise, I loved this powerful meditation on the small and often unvoiced moments that can make up a life’ RACHEL JOYCE
‘Such joyous immersion, I lost myself, and loved this superbly imperfect family’ TESSA HADLEY
‘A faultless novel, effortlessly profound. I read it in two sittings, totally immersed’ VICTORIA HISLOP’
If Anne Tyler isn’t the best writer in the world, who is?’ BBC RADIO 4 WOMAN’S HOUR