A 2022 BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR for THE TIMES, SUNDAY TIMES, DAILY TELEGRAPH, RED, GOOD HOUSEKEEPING AND CRITIC
‘The kind of rare story you want to nosedive into on a hot hungover weekend and slurp down like iced coffee – cold, sweet and quenching . . . a summer read to devour with suncream and spilt rosÃ© – and then lend to your mum or your daughter’ The Times
‘At the Table is a hugely intelligent, emotionally astute novel about family dynamics, and Claire Powell is an incredible new talent’ Marian Keyes
‘An assured, exquisitely drawn novel that fans of Sorrow And Bliss will adore’ Sarra Manning, Red magazine
To Nicole and Jamie Maguire, their parents seem the ideal couple – a suburban double act, happily married for more than thirty years. So when Linda and Gerry announce that they’ve decided to separate, the news sends shockwaves through the siblings’ lives, forcing them to confront their own expectations and desires.
Hardworking – and hard-drinking – Nicole pursues the ex she unceremoniously dumped six years ago, while people-pleasing Jamie fears he’s sleepwalking into a marriage he doesn’t actually want. But as the siblings grapple with the pressures of thirtysomething life, their parents struggle to protect the fragile faÃ§ade of their own relationship, and the secrets they’ve both been keeping.
Set in 2018, Claire Powell’s beautifully observed debut novel follows each member of the Maguire family over a tumultuous year of lunches, dinners and drinks, as old conflicts arise and relationships are re-evaluated. A gripping yet tender depiction of family dynamics, love and disillusionment, At the Table is about what it means to grow up – both as an individual, and as a family.
‘Painfully funny, acutely well-observed, powerfully resonant in its humanity and emotional accuracy. I missed this book whenever I wasn’t reading it’ Luke Kennard
‘A brilliant, coruscating depiction of dysfunctional family life. SO astute, on so many levels. I loved it’ Hannah Beckerman