A God in Ruins : Costa Award 2015 Winner
Publication Date: 4 January 2016
SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2015 COSTA NOVEL AWARD
A God in Ruins relates the life of Teddy Todd - would-be poet, heroic World War II bomber pilot, husband, father, and grandfather - as he navigates the perils and progress of the 20th century. For all Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge will be to face living in a future he never expected to have.
This gripping, often deliriously funny yet emotionally devastating book looks at war - that great fall of Man from grace - and the effect it has, not only on those who live through it, but on the lives of the subsequent generations. It is also about the infinite magic of fiction.Those who loved the bestselling Life After Life will recognise Teddy as Ursula Todd's adored younger brother - but for those who have not read it, A God in Ruins stands fully on its own. Few will dispute that it proves once again that Kate Atkinson is one of the most exceptional novelists of our age.
Caroline Baum's Review
I was a huge fan of Kate Atkinson's Life After Life which explored the different possibilities of how life might turn out for its heroine Ursula, born into an Edwardian family and culminating in the late 1960s. Then my colleague John Purcell raved about the sequel, which focuses on the life of Teddy, Ursula's bomber pilot brother, who was so liked by both author and readers that he earned a book to himself.
Teddy is a good man, kind and thoughtful but circumspect. He is a triumph of Atkinson's imagination, and his sensibility is gloriously nuanced in its private, understated, British diffidence and understatement. Even when he is in the middle of a mission (these are the novel's high point, their airborne perspective neatly mirroring Ursula's climactic London Blitz scenes in the earlier novel...