Book of the Week

The Offering, by Grace McCleen. Photo: PA Photo/Sceptre
The Offering, by Grace McCleen. Photo: PA Photo/Sceptre

The Offering by Grace McCleen

Madeline is a teenage girl whose life is torn apart on her 14th birthday.

Having moved to live on an island with her overbearing God-fearing father and submissive mother, Madeline spends her days searching for something elusive and playing with her pet dog.

She confuses the normal development of a teenage girl with her own search for God, mixing up what is real and what is imagined.

Mundane things get confused with events in the bible so that the line between what is real and what is imagined becomes permanently blurred.

Events come to a head on her birthday, celebrations laid waste by events so cataclysmic to her family that things will never be the same again.

Having taken refuge in a mental infirmary, Madeline is presented with an enigmatic young psychiatrist who attempts to unravel the mystery which has been buried in the layers of her troubled mind.

Little does he know the shattering effects his gentle probings will have.

Grace McCleen is the critically acclaimed author of award-winning offerings The Land Of Decoration and The Professor of Poetry and The Offering is sure to result in more nominations.

With praise from Hilary Mantel and AS Byatt, there’s every reason to believe McCleen will remain a firm fixture of the literary intelligentsia for years to come.