The Crossing – Andrew Miller

The Crossing - Andrew Miller
The Crossing – Andrew Miller

I did enjoy this novel, far more than You.

That said, it’s a bit of a strange combination, with parts 1 and 2 following the development of Maud and Tim’s relationship from meeting through the university sailing club to the arrival of daughter Zoe and the impact she has on the wider family relationships, and parts 3 and 4 covering Maud’s solo sail across the Atlantic after the death of her daughter and breakdown of her marriage. I found the ending a bit odd, disconnected from the rest of the already disjointed narrative.

Some of the reviews make it sound like there’s some uncertainty about Maud’s earthliness. I found none – her supremely self contained character has been shaped by her unemotional parents and the distant relationships that result.

Publisher page: The Crossing – Andrew Miller

Author interview: Andrew Miller interviewed about The Crossing – Foyles (No date)

Review: The Crossing by Andrew Miller review – Kate Clanchy, The Guardian, 29 August 2015

Pure – Andrew Miller

1785, four years before the arrival of revolution in Paris, young engineer Jean-Baptiste Baratte is commissioned with the removal of the cemetery of Les Innocents.

As his dreams of building bridges are replaced by the practicalities of bringing up the bodies and disposing of the bones, we follow Jean-Baptiste’s relationships old and new, all revolving around the graveyard and the Church of the Holy Innocents – fellow engineer Lecoeur, a friend from their time together working at the mines at Valenciennes, the Monnard family with whom he lodges, Armand the flamboyant church organist and bon viveur, Jeanne the granddaughter of the church sexton, and the elusive, exotic Heloïse.

Publisher page: Pure – Andrew Miller

Andrew Miller’s Pure and Les Innocents Cemetery – review by Clare Crowston, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign