Published by Granta
A young woman, Violet, lies in a hospital bed in the closing days of the war. Her pregnancy has gone and she is no longer able to conceive. With her husband deployed to the Pacific Front and her friends caught up in transitory love affairs, she must find a way to put herself back together.
In a small, watchful town in the Welsh valleys, another Violet contemplates the fate she shares with her unborn child. Unwed and at a loose end, an overseas posting offers a temporary way out. Plunged into the heat and disorder of Naples, her body begins to reveal the responsibility it carries, even as she is drawn into the burnished circle of a charismatic new friend, Maggie.
Between these two Violets, sung into being like a babe in a nursery rhyme: a son. As their lives intertwine, a story of women’s courage emerges, suffused with power, lyricism and beauty, from an exhilarating new voice in British fiction.
‘Stunning and original… Written in pristine prose, it reminded me of the possibilities of language’ – Elizabeth Macneal
‘A novel of taut symmetry and dissonance… Alex Hyde’s prose is rhythmically acute and emotionally layered. This is a subtle and daring book’ – Margo Jefferson
Alex Hyde, born in Birmingham in 1981, is a former Daunt’s bookseller who now lectures at University College London. Violets, her first novel, is a fictional reimagining of her father’s story, drawing on both family mythology and his personal archives. She lives with her family in South London.