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Summary

A witty and powerful exploration of the nature of love, young people in crisis, and the secrets that change and destroy relationships, family dynamics and, ultimately, lives.

Left of the bang: a military term for the build-up to an explosion.

For failing concert pianist Tamsin Jarvis, the pressure is mounting. She thought she was happy with her adoring schoolteacher boyfriend, Callum, but when Chris comes into their lives, that starts to change. In a few months Chris will be gone, leaving for his first tour of Afghanistan. Nothing seems to be working out the way Tamsin wants it to - in fact she's not even sure what it is she wants.

With sharp, satirical humour, unparalleled social observation, extreme sexual honesty and great empathy, Claire Lowdon has captured the foibles, hopes and difficulties that characterise a strata of young London today. A funny, unflinching insider's view on the generation born in the 1980s - who are often having much less fun than it seems - this is a Vanity Fair for our times.

©2015 Claire Lowdon (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

Critic reviews

"A remarkably compelling and shrewd look at the way we live now. Clear-eyed, audacious and disarmingly honest." (William Boyd)
"Claire Lowdon has written the definitive novel of a generation of Londoners. So involved did I become in their lives, so closely did I feel I knew them, that the note of disquiet that carries through the pages like the eerie mewl of a tuning fork absolutely levelled me when finally it reached its full glass-shattering resonance three-quarters of the way through." (Gavin Corbett)

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