Alex Clark

A host of unquiet spirits

The stricken heroine of The Stopped Heart, numb with grief, retires to a quiet country cottage — only to find it full of menace and unquiet spirits

As its title suggests, Julie Myerson’s tenth novel is about stoppage: the kind that happens when one suffers a loss so absolute and cataclysmic that there seems no possible way forward; when the future seems not merely unthinkably disrupted but also irrelevant. For the majority of people lucky enough to live out their days beyond war zones, barbaric regimes and disaster areas, such events usually come no closer than a news item; but even — perhaps especially — when the calamity is near at hand, we so often find ourselves at once desperate to empathise and yet incapable of imagining.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Keep reading with a free trial

Get your first month free when you subscribe. After that it’s just £1 a week for full website and app access. There’s no commitment, you can cancel any time.

Offer ends in: ${days} days ${hours} hrs ${minutes} mins ${seconds} secs

Unlock more articles



Ends tonight:
10 weeks of unlimited digital access for £1

Join the conversation with other Spectator readers. Subscribe to leave a comment.

Get 10 weeks of online and app access for just £1. That's a saving of more than 80% off the usual rate.

Already a subscriber? Log in