• Signed by the Author
  • Hardcover
  • UK First Edition, First Printing
Category:
Released June 3, 2021
ISBN 9781788166607

£14.99

Fantastic - a wonderful book. With intelligence, wit and zest, Cwen's matriarchal dream ... offers a bold vision of an alternative future, teases at our deep past and subtly weaves together our environment and gender' Lily Cole


'Wild, original...a beautiful work' Neel Mukherjee
'A rare book, bold and powerful' Xiaolu Guo


On an unnamed archipelago off the east coast of Britain, the impossible has come to pass. Women control the civic institutions. Decide how the islands' money is spent. Run the businesses. Tend to their families. Teach the children hope for a better world. They say that this gynotopia is Eva Levi's life's work, and that now she has disappeared, it will be destroyed. But they don't know about Cwen.


Cwen has been here longer than the civilisation she has returned to haunt. The clouds are her children, and the waves. Her name has ancient roots, reaching down into the earth and halfway around the world. The islands she inhabits have always belonged to women. And she will do anything she can to protect them.


This remarkable novel is a portrait of female power and female potential, both to shelter and to harm. What are we? Islanders or mainlanders, migrants or landowners, men or women, past or future? Or a mixture of them all? And how do we make sense of these islands we call home?

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Alice Albinia

Alice Albinia is an award-winning author of conjoined works of fiction and nonfiction.

Her first book, Empires of the Indus: the story of a river (John Murray, 2008), describes a riverine journey through time and place: from Karachi on the shores of the Arabian Sea, north through Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, to the slopes of Mount Kailash in Tibet.

The book won six awards, including a Somerset Maugham award and a Dolman prize. Her first novel, Leela’s Book (Harvill Secker, 2011), is a retelling, set in modern Delhi, of how the Mahabharata, India’s ancient Sanskrit epic, came to be written down on that same Tibetan mountain. It was shortlisted for the Authors’ Club best first novel award and long-listed for the DSC prize for South Asian Literature.

» See more books by Alice Albinia

Professionally Packed

All of our books that a have dust wrapper are covered in clear protective, removable film and are packed professionally in bubble wrap and a box for shipping so that they reach you in perfect condition.