Today is Jack Sadler's birthday. Or is it? He's not sure, he doesn't really care. It might be his last day or the beginning of a new chapter in his life. He must find the key to his old room. He knows the truth about his past lies there and somehow he must get in and confront it.
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(197mm x 130mm x 12mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
The life of Jack Sadler, an aged butler who has inherited the mansion of his childless employers, unrolls smooth as Victorian plush, and, although you'll suspect, you'll not fully realize until the contemporary close that this British firstnovelist has more than a moony Downstairs spin-off in mind. Through flashbacks, which flicker off and on in random chronological order within his wavering consciousness, Jack's career is reconstructed: a brief happiness in infancy with his unwed mother and kind grandfather; a boyhood with mother in service - their bed, their small room with the pastoral painting on the wall; early training as footman; Jack's years as perfect butler with the Colonel and the Colonel's sweet, scattered wife Madge (who never complained about his impotence); Jack's one passionate affair with a boy from London during the war; and, then, the Queen's coronation superimposed upon the surreal death of the Colonel and Madge. Jack at 72 is crabbed, ungracious and has no particular purpose in survival - until the day he remembers the key to his old room, so much like that of his childhood. Prepare for a jolt when you stumble upstairs with Jack, in this most mellow of diversions discreetly laced with bitters. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Rose Tremain
Rose Tremain's bestselling novels have won many awards, including the Orange Prize (The Road Home), the Whitbread Novel of the Year (Music and Silence), the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the Prix Femina Etranger (Sacred Country). Restoration was shortlisted for the Booker Prize in1989 and made into a film in 1995. Her short story, 'Moth', was also filmed (as the award-winning Ricky) by Francois Ozon in 2009. Her most recent novel, Trespass, was a Richard and Judy Bookclub Choice. Rose Tremain was made a CBE in 2007. She lives in Norfolk and London with the biographer, Richard Holmes.