(Serpent's Tail, 2014)
After Me Comes the Flood
Bookish John Cole, aloof and alone in middle age, walks out of his life on the thirty-first day without rain. Making his way to the Norfolk coast, his car breaks down in the punishing heat. Abandoning it on an isolated road, he comes to a solitary house whose residents welcome him in.
But there's more to this curious community hidden in the Thetford pines than meets the eye: his hosts all know him by name. They've prepared a room for him, and claim to have been waiting for him all along…
" ... unsettling and beguiling, and beautifully lyrical, this stunning literary debut marks Sarah Perry as a terrifically talented novelist of the very highest calibre." - John Burnside, The Guardian.
See John Cole's notebook here.
Praise for After Me Comes the Flood
'What makes this novel truly remarkable is its unique vision, its skilful and sophisticated characterisations, and the creation, without unseemly effects, of an atmosphere that will haunt the reader long after the final page
- John Burnside, Guardian
Just occasionally you pick up a novel that is inexplicably gripping from the first page - and Perry's debut is one of them
- Phil Barker, Sunday Times
An original and haunting book ... a mix of elegant, alluring, but subtly sinister characters ... a talented writer
- Daily Mail
A dark, marvellous novel ... Perry evokes the oppressive atmosphere in precise, elegant prose ... This mesmeric quality recalls Sebald's writing, but Gothic-smudged ... It is not good for a first novel, just very good full stop. So pour yourself a cool drink and bask in a dazzling new writing talent.
- Catherine Blyth, Sunday Telegraph
After Me Comes the Flood is written in deceptively straightforward prose that gradually yields a profound sense of foreboding. A house and the mysteries it contains; a disconcerting, dark reservoir to which everyone's attention returns; and a most unsettling sense of place - all made me think of Fowles' The Magus, Maxwell's The Chateau, and Woolf's To The Lighthouse. This is a book perhaps most deeply about the unknowability of others and of oneself - and one that, while highly disorienting and eerie, is also intensely warm. I loved it.
- Katherine Angel, author of UNMASTERED
After Me Comes the Flood is published by Serpent's Tail
The Independent review by Holly Williams. 28th July 2014
The Daily Telegraph review by Catherine Blyth. 15th July 2014
The Eastern Daily Press review by Rowan Mantell. 27th June 2014