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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

What if the life you have always known is taken from you in an instant?

What would you do to get it back?

Twins Jeanie and Julius have always been different from other people. At 51 years old, they still live with their mother, Dot, in rural isolation and poverty. Inside the walls of their old cottage, they make music, and in the garden they grow (and sometimes kill, everything they need for sustenance. 

But when Dot dies suddenly, threats to their livelihood start raining down. Jeanie and Julius would do anything to preserve their small sanctuary against the perils of the outside world, even as their mother's secrets begin to unravel, putting everything they thought they knew about their lives at stake. 

Unsettled Ground is a heart-stopping novel of betrayal and resilience, love and survival. It is a portrait of life on the fringes of society that explores with dazzling emotional power how we can build our lives on broken foundations and spin light from darkness.

©2021 Claire Fuller (P)2021 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about Unsettled Ground

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant

Every story Claire Fuller writes is so different. I couldn’t wait for this to come out and I was not disappointed. The grit of country life, being bottom of the pack, and the brutality of the thoughtless is balanced by the natural kindness of others. I could have been in that caravan or cottage and understood the characters and now it’s finished I will miss it snd their stories.

4 people found this helpful

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unsettled ground

a slow burn of a story. the story of 51 year old twins who at the start of the book live at home with their mother who dies in the first few pages and then their story unfolds. such a beautiful story that had me hooked from the start.

4 people found this helpful

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The lies some mothers tell

A beautiful book and the narration is excellent I listened whilst running and was transported. A sad tale but also uplifting and the hidden strength of the main protagonist shines through. I look forward to reading the book and our group discussion in May.

3 people found this helpful

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A must read!

loved the storyline, the characters and the twists and turns. kept me engrossed the whole way through. Must read mote by this author.

2 people found this helpful

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Wonderful

This book is absolutely amazing and I strongly recommend it. The story is completely gripping and for the first time in an audible book I really smiled and really cried. It’s a really original story with excellent characters with whom I was completely involved. The narration is frankly brilliant and I could not fault it. Don’t miss out by not listening to this wonderful book.

1 person found this helpful

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Interesting idea but characters can be frustrating

I listened to this in a whole day, having heard it reviewed on the radio. The idea intrigued me, but I found characters frustrating at times, especially Bridget. some of the reasons for deceptions didn't seem to tie up in a plausible way to me. Relieved it has a slightly positive end as I found it a quite depressing.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ms
  • 14-05-21

Wonderful story

Enjoyed everything about this unusual storyline. It is really sad in parts but the happy ending makes up for that. Perfect escapism. Great narration too.


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Truly amazing book.

This story will stay with me now that I've finished it. The writing brilliantly brings to life the desperation and poverty of this couple. I was gripped all the way through and will now look for more from this author. it was wonderfully narrated too.

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enjoyable listen

enjoyed listening .Well written . would listen to more by this author and good narration

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Sad but enjoyable

It took me a little while to get into this tale of 51 year old twins who have lived a sheltered life with their mother. They have lived with stories (ultimately lies) about the death of their father and the role of their landlord in that death. But when their mother dies their safe, sheltered but poverty-driven life is thrown into disarray. The twins uncover debts and mysteries which shock them; their mother has taught them to live on little money, not to incur debts or favours and not to trust people. They don’t even have a bank account. They have few life or social skills and when they discover there is practically no money ‘in the jar’ they have no idea what to do or how will they will pay for a funeral.

This is a well told and beautifully crafted story about how ‘small lives’ are important and how people can befriend each other, help one another and ultimately help others to survive. It is also the story of arrested development, the effects of bullies on the shy and the unfortunate, illiteracy, sexual frustration and the stubborn will of some people to survive in desperate circumstances.

There is a shocking, sickening twist making this one of the saddest stories I have read in a long time. But there are also uplifting, heartening aspects and I would recommend it to anyone who likes a challenging read. Lovely, sympathetic narration too.