In their remote cottage on the British coast, a long-married pair of retired nuclear physicists live a modest life in the aftermath of a natural disaster, giving scrupulous care to energy rationing, their garden, their yoga practice. When former colleague Rose reappears after 38 years, her presence upends the couple’s equilibrium and trust. As the fallout from long-ago decisions comes hurtling into view, Rose unveils a proposal that threatens more than their marriage. A hit in London and New York, Lucy Kirkwood’s latest is a taut and disquieting thriller about responsibility and reparation—what one generation owes the next.
A richly suggestive and beautifully written piece of work, provoking questions that will continue to nag and expand in your mind.
Queen Elizabeth II opened the world’s first commercial nuclear power station at Calder Hall in Cumberland on October 17, 1956. Lord Privy Seal Richard Butler described the moment as “epoch-making,” and the chairman of the Atomic Energy Authority, Sir Edwin Plowden, said that “Nothing that comes after will be able to detract from the importance of this first great step forward.” Plowden, like many, saw the opening of the plant as heralding in “a second industrial revolution” with nuclear power as its basis.Read More
In a small cottage on the British coast, Hazel makes a modest life for herself and her husband Robin in the aftermath of a natural disaster that’s led to the meltdown of a nuclear reactor at a power plant. Hazel and Robin are retired nuclear physicists, having helped to open the plant in the 1970s. Now, ensconced in their vacation cabin while waiting for the government to clear their return to their farmhouse in the current “exclusion zone”, Hazel follows the rules, stays occupied, and is waiting it out.Read More
Whether delving into the underground world of sex-trafficking, addressing the complex layers of US-China relations, or navigating the individual and communal fallouts of an environmental nuclear catastrophe, Lucy Kirkwood is fearless in tackling situations and dynamics she hasn’t experienced. Yet this passion for precise and comprehensively observed moments yields plays in the midst of irresolvable perspectives or ambiguous impulses.Read More
Hazel wasn’t expecting a visitor—there’s no one for miles, not since the disaster. And especially not Rose. Rose whom she hasn’t seen in 38 years. Rose whom she’d heard had died. So when Rose shows up very much alive, Hazel accidentally bloodies her long-gone colleague’s nose. And when Rose seems unnaturally familiar with the vacation cottage that Hazel and her husband Robin are staying at until the government clears them to return to their proper house, well—that’s not the oddest thing that’s happened in the last few weeks.Read More