Swimming To Ithaca
By Simon Mawer
*An exciting and atmospheric novel that will continue to expand the audience for Simon Mawer
On her deathbed, Dee Denham, at one time the toast of colonial Cyprus, tells her son Thomas that her illness is a punishment. Compelled by grief and a confused childhood memory of betrayal, Thomas finds himself searching for the meaning of her last words. He searches through faded photographs and love letters, seeks out survivors and examines his own imperfect recollections. A vanished world comes to life: the restless, seductive island of Cyprus at the end of Empire, a place of oleander and carob trees, cocktails at the Harbour Club and adultery in shuttered bedrooms, peopled by ghostly admirers and conspirators, lovers and spies. Dee's story, an intimate history of violence and tenderness for which Thomas finds himself quite unprepared, gathers momentum, against, in the background, the ominous roar of approaching disaster.
A vivid evocation of the past and a deft examination of the dangerous power of memory, SWIMMING TO ITHACA sets fragile human relationships against the unstoppable force of history and sheds new light on both.
Simon Mawer was born in 1948 in England, and spent his childhood there, in Cyprus and in Malta. He then moved to Italy, where he and his family lived for more than thirty years, and taught at the British International School in Rome. He and his wife currently live in Hastings. Simon Mawer is the author of several novels including the Man Booker shortlisted The Glass Room, The Girl Who Fell from the Sky and Tightrope.
- Other details
- Publication date:
21 Jun 2007
- Page count:
The Cypriot narrative blooms with life, a certain intrigue and some sharply drawn characters — INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
Conjures up a 1950s world of carob trees, cocktails and rebellion — THE TIMES
A gripping read — SUNDAY TIMES