The Sing of the Shore

Lucy Wood

At the very edge of England, where the Atlantic Ocean meets the land and visitors flock in with the summer like seagulls, there is a Cornwall that is not shown on postcards.

It is a place where communication cables buzz deep beneath the sand; where satellite dishes turn like flowers on clifftops, and where people drift like flotsam, caught in eddying tides. Restless children haunt empty holiday homes, a surfer struggles with the undertow of family life, a girl watches her childhood spin away from her in the whirl of a night-time fairground and, in a web of sea caves, a brother and sister search the dark for something lost.

These astonishing, beguiling stories of ghosts and shifting sands, of static caravans and shipwrecked cargo, explore notions of landscape and belonging, permanence and impermanence, and the way places can take hold and never quite let go.

Reviews of The Sing of the Shore

  • Heart-thumping miniature thrillers. There’s an uncanny, delicate quality to much of Wood’s prose that belies how difficult this kind of writing is to pull off’ Guardian

    ‘She constructs a vivid, uneasy fictional geography of modern Cornwall’ Jonathan McAloon, Spectator

    The Sing of the Shore shows Lucy Wood at the top of her considerable game. Best enjoyed with the woodburner stoked up and hail lashing the windows, these discreetly linked stories conjure a wholly original Cornish Gothic: now sad, now funny, now so profoundly creepy you’ll check that dark corner of the room before continuing’ Patrick Gale, author of Notes from an Exhibition

    ‘Rain-drenched, windswept and haunted – this is how I felt as I read The Sing of the Shore. Wood’s is a Cornwall filled with uneasy spirits, both living and dead, but that also welcomed me in with wry gossip and knowing looks. Absorbing, beautiful, and deeply uncanny, this collection soaked me through and will linger in my bones’ Zoe Gilbert, author of Folk

    ‘The sounds of the sea and the weather ripple through these eerie, exceptional stories set in a Cornwall that is, by turns, moody and melancholy, winder-filled and woebegone’ Eithne Farry, Daily Mail

    ‘The stories of The Sing of the Shore continue to resonate long after you have closed its covers, and form a remarkably fine collection, beautiful and unsettlingShiny New Books

    ‘These haunting, elegiac stories capture bleak moments of unfulfilled lives’ S Magazine, Sunday Express

    ‘Mesmerising short-story collection…the writing is so good it is hard to resist’ Leaf Arbuthnot, Sunday Times

    ‘Elegant new collection of stories … Every figure is wonderfully observed, their lives made poignant and moving in a few brief pages’ Lamorna Ash, TLS