This is the story of the Hasting family - their secrets, their loves and losses, dreams and heartbreaks - captured in a seamless series of individual moments that span the years between the first World War and the present. The novel opens in 1914 as William, a young factory worker, spends one last evening at home before his departure for the navy…His son Billy, grows into a champion cyclist and will ride into the D-Day landings on a military bicycle…His son in turn, Will, struggles with a debilitating handicap to become an Oxford professor in the 1960s…And finally, young Billie Hastings makes a life for herself as an artist in contemporary London. Just as the names echo down through the family, so too does the legacy of choices made, chances lost, and truths long buried.
The Undertow / Jo Baker
“The main characters are fully realized, with each personality becoming a force field and the language warping around them. Baker is skilled at evoking not only the distinctive social circumstances of the settings but the essential nature of each character…this portrait of four generations of a reticent British family is emotionally powerful.” ~ New York Times (Louisa Thomas)