The haunting novel from Paul Bailey, whose work has been short-listed twice for the Booker Prize.
At the age of seventy, Andrew Peters looks back across the years to remember life with his doting Uncle Rudolf, who rescued him from fascist Romania as a child. Vivid, often hilarious, stories of Rudolf’s brilliant but blighted singing career are intertwined with the slow unfolding of secrets that have shadowed Andrew’s otherwise happy life. Told in matchless prose, this deeply moving novel captures a vanished epoch with exquisite tact and restraint.
Reviews of Uncle Rudolf
- ‘A finely-wrought meditation on language, art, melancholia, lyric tenors, loss. Paul Bailey’s book contains exquisitely poignant moods of regret.’ Jane Shilling, Sunday Telegraph
- ‘A poised and elegant tale.’ Amellia Hill, Observer
- ‘Lyrical and touching.’ Michael Arditti, The Times
- ‘An exquisitely composed novel of doubleness, dubeity and prolonged protected silences.’ Guardian
- ‘This fine and thoughtful tale is given a bittersweet seductiveness by the elegant sophistication of Bailey’s writing and the splendid flamboyance of his central character.’ Lucy Hughes-Hallet, Guardian
- ‘The underlying story is sad – harrowing, indeed – but there is spicy humour here too. Andrew himself is an appealing narrator: honest, troubled, perceptive. It is the clarity of his vision that gives the novel its crisp and satisfying accuracy, and makes it one of Paul Bailey’s best books.’ Independent
- ‘This is a beautifully worked cultural fable, elliptically presented after the manner Bailey has made uniquely his own. But it’s more than this; the teller of the tale and his subject love one another deeply, and their love transfigures the world they find themselves in.’ Spectator