I always thought you'd know, somehow, if something terrible was going to happen. I thought you'd sense it, like when the air goes damp and heavy before a storm and you know you'd better hide yourself away somewhere safe until it all blows over.
But it turns out it's not like that at all. There's no scary music playing in the background like in films. No warning signs. Not even a lonely magpie. One for sorrow, Mum used to say. Quick, look for another.
The world can tip at any moment … a fact that fifteen-year-old Pearl is all too aware of when her mum dies after giving birth to her baby sister. Told across the year following her mother's death, Pearl's story is full of bittersweet humour and heartbreaking honesty about how you deal with grief that cuts you to the bone, as she tries not only to come to terms with losing her mum, but also the fact that her sister - The Rat - is a constant reminder of why her mum is no longer around…
From the author of How Not to Disappear comes a stunning novel about love and loss, and how to carry on when your whole world is turned upside down.
Praise for The Year of the Rat:
'Beautifully written with a dry sense of humour.' The Stylist
'I cried, I laughed, I cried some more… a moving must-read that'll stay with you long after the last page is turned.' Bliss
'The Year of the Rat is already a strong contender for best YA debut of 2014… I never wanted it to end.' Wondrous Reads
'This novel will stay with me for a very long time. A must-read.' The Mile Long Bookshelf
'An assured debut...Furniss describes Pearl's journey with sensitivity and humour' The Bookseller - editors pick section