""Signals of Distress" is an engrossing book...Crace is a genius at making round and really human characters, and his characters make his novel superb."--"Newsday"November, 1836. A fierce gale beaches an American sail ship off the English coast, injuring an African slave below decks and eventually disgorging 300 head of cattle and rowdy American sailors into a hardscrabble fishing village. The same storm drives into port a steamer, bearing one Aymer Smith, the foolish well-intentioned prig who will deprive the town of its livelihood, free the African slave, and set into motion a whole series of unforeseeable, tragicomic events. One of the most seductive and surprising novelist at work today, once again creates a richly strange and believable world, uncannily familiar to our own."One of the brightest lights in contemporary British fiction. With beguiling narrative ease and prose lyric enough to invest the most ordinary events with mystery, Mr. Crace...lays bare the commonplace events-always unrecorded-that crystallize later as 'history.'"-- Charles Johnson, "The New York Times Book Review"
"Crace weaves a progressive magic into this mythic plot with masterful detail, luminous prose and haunting characterization."--"The Boston Globe"JIM CRACE is the author of seven other novels, including "Being Dead," which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction, and, most recently, "Genesis." He lives in Birmingham, England.show more