Keiran Goddard

Published by Little, Brown

The second time you came, we went from bar to bar to bar. It made the city feel smaller. Like a map we were folding to the size of a stamp. We were good at that. We could have fit an entire universe inside a matchbox.

Love builds up little by little and that’s why it makes people reach for words like root and sediment and other words to do with rocks and trees. But what about the dismantling? Does it happen that way too? Because it feels like it is happening much, much faster. And I am reaching for words like landslide and like wave and like storm …

Exquisitely crafted, wildly imaginative and as darkly funny as it is moving, Hourglass is a revolutionary love story. It turns time upside down, combs the intimate wreckage of heartbreak for something universal, and asks what it means to lose what you love.

‘Beautiful and very funny’ – Brett Anderson

‘This book glows in the heart of the reader’ – Max Porter

Buy now



Keiran Goddard grew up in Shard End, Birmingham in a working-class family. When he was fifteen, an inspirational teacher started lending him books and he fell in love with reading. He went on to get a place at the University of Oxford via a scheme for students from disadvantaged backgrounds. He is the author of one poetry pamphlet (Strings) and two full-length poetry collections (For The Chorus and Votive). His debut collection was shortlisted for the Melita Hume Prize and he was the runner up in the William Blake Prize. He speaks internationally on issues related to social change and currently develops research on workers’ rights, the future of work, automation and trade unionism.

← Back to the Desmond Elliott Prize 2022

Stay up to date! Subscribe to receive the latest news, articles and offers from NCW.