Nominated by:

Münchner Stadtbibliothek, Germany

City Library of Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Publisher of nominated edition:

John Murray, UK

Elmet

Fiona Mozley    

Daniel is heading north. He is looking for someone. The simplicity of his early life with Daddy and Cathy has turned menacing and fearful. They lived apart in the house that Daddy built for them in the woods with his bare hands. They foraged and hunted. Cathy was more like their father: fierce and full of simmering anger. Daniel was more like their mother: gentle and kind. Sometimes, their father disappeared, and would return with a rage in his eyes. But when he was at home, he was at peace. He told them that the little copse in Elmet was theirs alone. But that wasn’t true. Local men, greedy and watchful, began to circle like vultures. All the while, the terrible violence in Daddy grew.

Brutal and beautiful in equal measure, Elmet is a compelling portrayal of a family living on the fringes of contemporary society, as well as a gripping exploration of the disturbing actions people are capable of when pushed to their limits.

About the author

Fiona Mozley was born in Hackney but grew up in York and studied at Cambridge before moving to Buenos Aires for a year – without speaking any Spanish. After briefly working at a literary agency in London, she moved back to York to complete a PhD in Medieval Studies. She also has a weekend job at The Little Apple Bookshop in York. Elmet is her first novel and has been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2017, a Somerset Maugham Award and the Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize. It has also been longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, the International Dylan Thomas Prize and the Polari First Book Prize.

Librarian’s comments

Atmospheric and unsettling, Elmet is a lyrical commentary on contemporary society and one family’s precarious place in it, as well as an exploration of how deep the bond between father and child can go.

Related Entries