An immediate personal favourite. More than a flicker of Machen, echoes of Salinger’s CATCHER’, though with a more precocious character, a possible homage to Tove Jansson, and much that reminded me of Joan Lindsay’s PICNIC AT HANGING ROCK.
I’ve not yet read a Burnside novel that didn’t both spellbind and quietly horrify me. But this is my favourite of those I have read; I even prefer this to GLISTER, which is saying something. Be prepared for considered (and rewarding) insights into consciousness, as well as unusual characters that are studied in forensic detail.
Would suit a Wheatley, Haneka or von Trier adaptation. There is much to be learnt about enigma and restraint from this Scottish poet and literary novelist and great rewards await a patient reader.