In this timely and explosive novel, an academic’s seemingly mundane midlife crisis takes an alarming turn after his visit to a Greek monastery.
It’s February 2019. Philip Notman, an acclaimed historian with a German wife and a troubled nineteen-year-old son, is on his way back from a conference in Norway when he has an unexpected and disturbing experience that completely alters his view of the life that he has been living and the world that surrounds him.
Believing that Inés, an attractive Spanish sociologist whom he met at the conference, can shed light on what he is feeling, he travels to Cádiz to see her. But his journey doesn’t end there. Is he thinking of leaving his wife, whom he still loves, or is he trying to change a reality that he appears to find unbearable? Is he on a quest for a simpler and more authentic existence or is he utterly self-deluded? And if he is in denial about what he is doing, how far will he go to avoid facing the truth?
In this highly original and unsettling novel, one of the UK’s most celebrated writers portrays an ordinary man in an extraordinary dilemma, a dilemma that will push him to the very edge of annihilation and disaster.