The Road Home
by Rose Tremain
Here is a novel that ends too soon, into which the reader has become involved with characters that no longer seem fictional, but exist within the reader's immediate experience. Rose Tremain has always shown a remarkable talent for bringing historical figures to life but in THE ROAD HOME her characters are of today. We know the people in this book: we are the people in the book.
Tremain writes with dry percipience of England's uneasiness with regard to what it sees as a wholesale landing on its turf (no longer green and pleasant) of Eastern Europeans, its impoverished but very close relations. And Tremain has not the slightest hesitation in depicting the English, warts and all, from an Eastern European's point of view! But never mind all that. The book is a vilification of human neediness and its market price, and the strength and folly of fierce independence.
This novel is about values, violence and tenderness, and sex, gender, familial love, and the surprising shapes and shades of friendship. Human relationships are in transition as, perhaps, they have never been before today. The certainties were never very certain, after all.
Rose Tremain has won many prizes, including Whitbread Novel of the Year, The James Tait Black Memorial Prize, the Prix Femina Etranger, the Dylan Thomas Prize, the Angel Literary Award and The Sunday Express Book of the Year and at least three of her books will appear as films. THE ROAD HOME won her the Orange Broadband Prize 2008.
Read our interview with Rose Tremain.