SHORTLISTED FOR THE BOOKER PRIZE 2016
SHORTLISTED FOR THE GOLDSMITHS PRIZE 2016
Plunge into this hypnotic tale of female sexuality and power - from the author of Swimming Home and The Man Who Saw Everything
'Propulsive, uncanny, dreamlike. A feverish coming-of-age novel' Daily Telegraph
'A triumph of storytelling' Literary Review
'Today I dropped my laptop on the concrete floor of a bar built on the beach. My laptop has all my life in it and knows more about me than anyone else. So what I am saying is that if it is broken, so am I . . .'
Two women arrive in a village on the Spanish coast. Rose is suffering from a strange illness and the doctors are mystified. Her daughter Sofia has brought her here to find a cure with the infamous and controversial Dr Gomez - a man of questionable methods and motives. Intoxicated by thick heat and the seductive people who move through it, both women begin to see their lives clearly for the first time in years.
Through the opposing figures of mother and daughter, Deborah Levy explores the strange and monstrous nature of womanhood. Dreamlike and utterly compulsive, Hot Milk is a delirious fairy tale of feminine potency, a story both modern and timeless.
'Perfectly crafted. So mesmerising that reading it is to be under a spell' Independent on Sunday
'Hot Milk treads a sweaty, sun-drenched path into the history books. A properly great novel' Romola Garai
'Hot Milk is an extraordinary novel, beautifully rich, vividly atmospheric and psychologically complex... Every man and woman should read it' Bernardine Evaristo
'Hypnotic... This novel has a transfixing gaze and a terrible sting that burns long after the final page is turned' Observer
'Terrific, sizzling with heat and sexuality . . . You devour it in one sitting' Radio Times
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
There’s no shortage of stories about aimless, compromised women nowadays, but Hot Milk feels special. It’s the story of 25-year-old Sofia Papastergiadis, who's travelled from London to a sunbaked Spanish town to accompany her hypochondriac mother to a high-end medical clinic. Sofia is intelligent—she’s abandoned her PhD in anthropology to be a caregiver—but she’s also passive and confused, yielding to the whims of an intense German seamstress and whirling in doubt and suspicion. Deborah Levy’s novel—a finalist for 2016’s Man Booker Prize—is creepy and irresistible.
"Is Donald Duck a child or hormonal teenager or an immature adult? Or is he all of those things at the same time, like I probably am?" These questions come from the memorable heroine of Booker-finalist Levy's (Swimming Home) novel: 25-year-old Sofia, who instead of pursuing her anthropology Ph.D. works in a coffee shop in London and spends much of her time caring for her sick and complaining mother, Rose. The two have traveled to arid Almer a on Spain's southern coast to visit the renowned but unorthodox Dr. Gomez, a fitting choice, since Rose's ailment is baffling to everyone, including Sofia. While in Almer a, Sofia experiences an awakening: she meets the alluring Ingrid, gets stung by jellyfish, and becomes bolder in the face of her mother's oppressiveness. There is light mystery in the beautiful locale involving some potentially dangerous characters, and the story might be best described as The Magus as written by Lorrie Moore. But it's Sofia's frantic, vulnerable voice that makes this novel a singular read. Her offbeat and constantly surprising perspective treats the reader to writing such as "we dressed as though there weren't a dead snake in the room" and "unfinished hotels... had been hacked into the mountains like a murder." Levy has crafted a great character in Sofia, and witnessing a pivotal point in her life is a pleasure.