The Party

The Party

Elizabeth Day

‘As the train pressed on, I realised that my life was in the process of taking a different direction, plotted according to a new constellation. Because, although I didn’t know it yet, I was about to meet Ben and nothing would ever be the same again.’

Martin Gilmour is an outsider. When he wins a scholarship to Burtonbury School, he doesn’t wear the right clothes or speak with the right kind of accent. But then he meets the dazzling, popular and wealthy Ben Fitzmaurice, and gains admission to an exclusive world. Soon Martin is enjoying tennis parties and Easter egg hunts at the Fitzmaurice family’s estate, as Ben becomes the brother he never had.

But Martin has a secret. He knows something about Ben, something he will never tell. It is a secret that will bind the two of them together for the best part of 25 years.

At Ben’s 40th birthday party, the great and the good of British society are gathering to celebrate in a haze of champagne, drugs and glamour. Amid the hundreds of guests – the politicians, the celebrities, the old-money and newly rich – Martin once again feels that disturbing pang of not-quite belonging. His wife, Lucy, has her reservations too. There is disquiet in the air. But Ben wouldn’t do anything to damage their friendship.

Would he?

Reviews of The Party

  • ‘Witty, dark and compelling’ Sebastian Faulks

    ‘Kept me up into the small hours… Elizabeth Day’s latest novel is sinister and seductive and nothing short of breathtaking’ Francesca Seagal, author of The Innocents

    Praise for Elizabeth Day:

    ‘Elizabeth Day writes with unflinching, responsible honesty’ Sadie Jones

    ‘Day is an empathetic observer. She is meticulous in teaching and dissecting each sentence her characters experience’ Eileen Battersby, Irish Times

    ‘Day has demonstrable empathy for the outsider in all of us. She has a sharp, satirical eye’ Daily Mail

    ‘Day’s subtle prose packs a powerfully disturbing punch as her understated yet candid handling of dark subjects reaches into the most raw and fragile parts of all of us’ Metro

    ‘Day’s great strength is her insight’ Observer