The Deceptive Beauty of Everyday Life
Admiring readers of McGregor's earlier work, such as "If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things", will find much to entrance them here. This is writing of incredible skill and beauty. It opens as if to occupy the traditional territory of the whodunnit, albeit of a superior kind, and then .... he entirely forsakes the structure and narrative of the detective novel in favour of something much more interesting and moving - the inexorable momentum of everyday life and lives in a rural community. Although the central "event" of the story, the disappearance of a young girl, remains unresolved, it fades into the ebb and flow of the more prosaic events as characters weave in and out of each other's lives. To say that "nothing much happens" is both true and nonsensical. And, as you read on, it ceases to matter. The rhythm and pace of the writing carries you gently but firmly onward and has a mesmeric quality unlike anything I have read in recent times.
This is writing of consummate skill and great beauty and deserves every prize and plaudit it will undoubtedly receive. It is some six months since I read it and it has stayed with me like no other book in recent memory.