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Harry Kent is a sensitive man in late middle age, a reader and a thinker, without means perhaps but not without charm. Daisy has recovered from her unhappy past by learning to be self-sufficient, and viewing trust as a weakness. But there is still a part of her that yearns to be cared for once more. It is this part that Henry sees, and with dedicated and calculated patience he works at her defences. So it is that despite all attempts to resist his attentions, Daisy finds herself falling under Henry's spell...'Troubling, subtle and distinctive...completely unputdownable.' Miranda Seymour, Independent 'A superb storyteller whose elegantly written novels never fail to pull you in...she tells a taut and compelling story with a subtle build-up of tension that will keep the reader worrying till the end.' Sunday Express 'And engaging study of love which explores our deepest needs and desires.' Tatler 'I found myself seduced by her clever evocation of people and places, her perfect ear for dialogue and her elegant, sensitive portrayal of contemporary life.' Sunday Telegraph 'A novel which, although full of subtle touches, is as unputdownable as any thriller.' The Times

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  • Paperback | 376 pages
  • 129.54 x 190.5 x 30.48mm | 272.15g
  • 05 May 2000
  • Pan MacMillan
  • Pan Books
  • London
  • 0330368893
  • 9780330368896
  • 710,987

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Review text

Daisy, in her early 60s, divorced and disillusioned, is an intelligent, successful playwright; successful enough to buy a country cottage in addition to her London flat. Henry, five years older, about to be divorced, professional gardener, lives close by on a borrowed houseboat. He's charming, attentive, kind, infinitely patient - and dangerously manipulative. Both, in different ways, are starved of love, companionship and sexual fulfilment. Fans of the Cazalet Chronicles and earlier Howard novels will find this one well worth waiting for. The shrewd, observant author keeps a strong, expert hand on the two credible central characters and the delicate situation between them, while Daisy's friends look on in agony. (Kirkus UK)

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