Long, lazy summer days

Swaying in a hammock under the shade of vine leaves, book drooping on the bridge of my nose; the soft putter of the motor boat idling in the creek; crows roosting amidst treetops popping with cherries; the tires of my brother’s bike careening off the gravel; the air drenched by sprinklers; cannon ball dives off the waterlogged dock, scaring off mosquitoes and granddad’s taut fish line; fistful of blackberries staining our teeth, nails, chin, shirt; the greasy smoke from the grill pulling us home.

In her debut novel When God was a Rabbit, Sarah Winman brings back the lazy days of Cornish summers, memories of a carefree childhood casting long, deep shadows into the future, slowly gathering momentum like boiling storm clouds, to finally erupt in a thunder-clap of tragedy in adulthood, leaving the now grown-ups to pick up the pieces of their past and fit them back together in the puzzle that has become their life. In poignant and tender Chekovian scenes, the book showcases a vibrant cast of characters connected by familial and circumstantial ties and reveals how our past shapes our present and how the bonds we make with those around us determine where we end up as we grow older.

Shards of memories, coming together in glittering hues, a prism refracting truths that haunt and delight us, that tease us apart and build us back up; and seeping into our consciousness the tastes and smells of cabin BBQs: smoky mackerel caked in lemon and salt, its soft bones caught between our teeth; ochre mushroom juice pooling on the inside of a fresh bun rubbed in paprika oil; fluffy potatoes spooned with mayo, horseradish and chives; and a chilled glass of oaked chardonnay to cut through the oil.

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About Manu

Librarian turned fundraiser Manuela enjoys sharing stories, be they real or imaginary. She is part of 2 book clubs, attends weekly Toastmasters meetings, goes to the opera, sips wine with her meals and travels extensively with her family and friends.
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