Tag Archives: Clare Morrall

Book Review: ‘Natural Flights of the Human Mind’

clare morrall - natural flights of the human mind 2-8-13I’ve been having something of a Clare Morrall fest, that thing you get when you discover an author and wish they’d written more. The worst thing is when you get that feeling but the author is dead and there’s nothing left to read. Thankfully Clare Morrall is alive and writing, and I have two more novels to read – The Roundabout Man, and The Language of Others.
Natural Flights of the Human Mind is an original story about two outsiders who are brought together by circumstance and who, unknowingly, help each other to come to terms with their past. They are both scratchy characters, secretive, who do not invite gestures of friendship. Despite this, I liked both of them. Like all Morrall’s books, this is a gentle build, gradually unveiling the hidden goodness of people who on the outside seem unattractive and possibly irredeemable. Pete Straker lives in a lighthouse which threatens to collapse, a symbol of his life since he caused the death of 78 people 24 years earlier. He talks to no-one, the only sign of his caring nature is his nurturing of his two cats. Imogen Doody, a school caretaker whose husband walked out one day and never returned, inherits a wild, uninhabited cottage, covered with dense undergrowth, a symbol of her life. These two outsiders meet and, despite Straker’s silence and Doody’s anger, come to understand each other’s turmoil.
With numerous references to Biggles, the discovery of a Tiger Moth in a barn, and much DIY, this is a story about how lives can be rebuilt no matter what happened before.
‘Natural Flights of the Human Mind’ by Clare Morrall

Book Review: ‘The Man Who Disappeared’

clare morrall - the man who disappeared 30-7-13Felix Kendall longs for a family, as a boy he lost his own. From the first page where Felix stands in a dark street watching a family illuminated in their dining room, curtains open, you know Felix must be the ‘man who disappeared’ but you don’t know why. The characters are believable and the pages turn quickly as we follow the stories of Felix, his wife Kate, son Rory and daughter Millie as they come to terms with what has happened. I expected this to be a slow indulgent read, lyrical, beautifully written, which it is, but I raced through it in the way I am accustomed to do with thrillers. Clare Morrall is one of my favourite authors, I’ve been a fan since her first book Astonishing Splashes of Colour was shortlisted for the Booker.
‘The Man Who Disappeared’ by Clare Morrall