A House for Alice
Tuesday 16 April 2024
St Mary’s Barnes
‘Alice was thinking about her own next world and her own castle, which was not in Kingsbury or in Kilburn. It was far away from here, out in the fields near the edge of Benin City, a little house, long in the dreaming, which her relatives had been building for her for when it was time to go home to Nigeria. One day it would be time to go home.’
After fifty years in London, Alice wants to live out her days in the land of her birth. Her three children are divided on whether she stays or goes, and in the wake of their father’s death, the imagined stability of the family begins to fray. Meanwhile youngest daughter Melissa has never let go of a love she lost, and Michael in return, even within the sturdy walls of his marriage to the sparkling Nicole, is haunted by the failed perfection of the past. As Alice’s final decision draws closer, all that is hidden between Melissa and her sisters, Michael and Nicole, rises to the surface . . .
Diana Evans is the author of the novels 26a, The Wonder and Ordinary People. She has received nominations for the Whitbread First Novel, the Guardian First Book and the Commonwealth Best First Book awards and was the inaugural winner of the Orange Award for New Writers. Ordinary People won the 2019 South Bank Sky Arts Award for Literature and was shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, the Rathbones Folio Prize and the Orwell Prize for Political Fiction, and also received a nomination for the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction. Her journalism appears in Time magazine, the Guardian, Vogue and the Financial Times. She lives in London.