About Alex Hyde
Alex Hyde is a lecturer at University College London. Violets, her first novel, is a fictional reimagining of her father’s story, drawing on family mythology and his personal archives. She lives with her family in South London.
A young woman, Violet, lies in a hospital bed in the closing days of the war.
Her pregnancy is over and she is no longer able to conceive. With her husband deployed to the Pacific Front and her friends caught up in transitory love affairs, she must find a way to put herself back together.
In a small, watchful town in the Welsh valleys, another Violet contemplates the fate she shares with her unborn child. Unwed and unwanted, an overseas posting offers a temporary way out. Plunged into the heat and disorder of Naples, her body begins to reveal the responsibility it carries even as she is drawn into the burnished circle of a charismatic new friend, Maggie.
Between these two Violets, sung into being like a babe in a nursery rhyme: a son. As their lives begin to intertwine, a spellbinding story of women’s courage emerges, suffused with power, lyricism and beauty, from an exhilarating new voice in British fiction.
About Lucy Caldwell
Lucy Caldwell was born in Belfast in 1981. She is the author of four novels, several stage plays and radio dramas, and two collections of short stories: Multitudes and Intimacies. She won the BBC National Short Story Award in 2021 for ‘All the People Were Mean and Bad’. Other awards include the Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, the George Devine Award, the Dylan Thomas Prize and a Major Individual Artist Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. She was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2018 and in 2019 she was the editor of Being Various: New Irish Short Stories.
Two sisters, four nights, one city.
April, 1941. Belfast has escaped the worst of the war – so far. Over the next two months, it’s going to be destroyed from above, so that people will say, in horror, My God, Belfast is finished.
Many won’t make it through, and no one who does will remain unchanged.
Following the lives of sisters Emma and Audrey – one engaged to be married, the other in a secret relationship with another woman – as they try to survive the horrors of the four nights of bombing which were the Belfast Blitz, These Days is a timeless and heart-breaking novel about living under duress, about family, and about how we try to stay true to ourselves.
About Sian Norris
Sian Norris is a writer and journalist. She is the Chief European and Social Affairs reporter at Byline Times and her book on reproductive rights and the far-right will be published in 2023 by Verso. She was the founder of the Bristol Women’s Literature Festival.