book cover of The Long, Long Afternoon
Added by 8 members
 

The Long, Long Afternoon

(2021)
A novel by

 
 
Awards
2021 HWA Debut Crown Award (longlist)

A Stylist Best New Fiction of 2021 Selection, this stunning 1950s set debut mystery is a perfect summer read.

'A remarkably assured debut. A tale of inequality, broken dreams and quiet desperation behind a picture-perfect facade' Guardian

'A clever and absorbing debut by Inga Vesper, who bricks Joyce up in her perfect house, then smashes it to pieces with aplomb' The Times

________



Yesterday, I kissed my husband for the last time . . .

It's the summer of 1959, and the well-trimmed lawns of Sunnylakes, California, wilt under the sun. At some point during the long, long afternoon, Joyce Haney, wife, mother, vanishes from her home, leaving behind two terrified children and a bloodstain on the kitchen floor.

While the Haney's neighbours get busy organising search parties, it is Ruby Wright, the family's 'help', who may hold the key to this unsettling mystery. Ruby knows more about the secrets behind Sunnylakes' starched curtains than anyone, and it isn't long before the detective in charge of the case wants her help. But what might it cost her to get involved? In these long hot summer afternoons, simmering with lies, mistrust and prejudice, it could only take one spark for this whole 'perfect' world to set alight . . .

A beguiling, deeply atmospheric debut novel from the cracked heart of the American Dream, The Long, Long Afternoon is at once a page-turning mystery and an intoxicating vision of the ways in which women everywhere are diminished, silenced and ultimately under-estimated.

Everyone is talking about The Long, Long Afternoon

'Beguiling and evocative. This vivid and atmospheric pageturner will keep readers guessing all the way to its satisfying finale'
Sunday Express

'Beautifully crafted, claustrophobic and compelling. As delicious as a long drink on a hot day'
Stacey Halls, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Familiars and The Foundling

'Such a vivid atmosphere of stifling LA heat and stifling 50s domesticity'
Clare Chambers, author of Small Pleasures

'Breathtakingly stylish, hypnotic and masterfully gripping'
Chris Whitaker, author of We Begin at the End, Waterstones Thriller of the Month

'A triumph. What a pleasure to read something fresh and original. For once the hype is justified and Inga Vesper's gripping page turner must surely now be bound for Netflix'

Evening Standard

'A tasty, tense, page-turning combo of James Ellroy and Kate Atkinson with a bit of Mad Men thrown in'
Liz Hyder

'For fans of Revolutionary Road and Mad Men, this is an atmospheric tale of repression and style at the heart of the American Dream' Stylist



Genre: Mystery

Praise for this book

"This wonderful, beautifully written novel held me to the very last word. A perfect period piece that manages to bring new light to the world we live in today." - Stephanie Butland

"Such a vivid atmosphere of stifling LA heat and stifling 50s domesticity - the brittle facades of those suburban mansions with their manicured lawns and maddened housewives. A homage to hard-boiled American crime fiction, but told with a distinctive female sensibility. Lovely!" - Clare Chambers

"Atmospheric, beguiling murder mystery with important things to say about race, gender and class. Loved it!" - Araminta Hall

"Beautifully crafted, claustrophobic and compelling. As delicious as a long drink on a hot day." - Stacey Halls

"Delicious. Like a tasty, tense page-turning combo of James Ellroy and Kate Atkinson with a bit of Mad Men thrown in." - Liz Hyder

"Beautifully written and brilliantly observed, as well as being a page-turning mystery. The 1950s come alive with issues that resonate today." - Simon Lelic

"I was hooked from the opening sentence. I loved the setting and the way Inga gradually reveals the human struggles at the heart of the burgeoning civil rights and women's rights movements. As well as being a sharp examination of privilege and oppression, it's also completely gripping and kept me guessing right to the end." - Amanda Mason

"Evocative, stylish and gripping, The Long Long Afternoon exposes the dark underbelly of 1950s suburban America in a thriller that is pure class." - Deborah O'Connor

"A perfect read. California, 1959, a nation divided. In one stifling suburb murder plays out against a backdrop of racial & gender injustice. The desire for change rises from the pages like heat off a sidewalk." - Mary Paulson-Ellis

"Stunning. Set against a backdrop of increasing racial tension and the rise of the Women's Movement, a personal story of female friendship and tragedy unfolds. I loved every page." - Amanda Reynolds

"Loved this taut slice of classic noir. Shimmering Santa Monica skies, technicolor fifties suburbia hiding the darkest of secrets. All set against a backdrop of stifling racial tension. If there isn't a film in the pipeline I'd be shocked!" - C J Tudor

"Breathtakingly stylish, hypnotic and masterfully gripping. Inga paints the most beautiful portrait of 50s suburbia, yet each page scratches away at the sunny gloss to reveal the darkness beneath. Outstanding." - Chris Whitaker


Visitors also looked at these books


Used availability for Inga Vesper's The Long, Long Afternoon


About Fantastic Fiction       Information for Authors