Nobody knows why John Baird, a quiet family man, took it into his head one day to pick up a shotgun and murder his wife and children. On the remote Scottish island of Skellag, violent crime is unheard of, and the killings send shockwaves through this tiny community in which the Bairds were well-known and liked.
Tommy, the only survivor of the terrible crime, has come back to Skellag many years later. Faced with this reminder of the horrors that took place amongst them, the community must ask themselves again how much responsibility we have to know our neighbors. What drives a man to murder his own family? And to what extent is Tommy his father’s son?
With unflinching candor and powerful prose, Rebecca Wait interrogates the damaging legacy of toxic masculinity for a family and a community. Brave and urgent, Our Fathers shows how deeply family can wound and how it can offer our greatest solace.
Praise for Rebecca Wait’s The Followers
“A restrained tour-de-force, profoundly unsettling, brilliantly executed, and deeply humane.”—Emily St. John Mandel, author of Station Eleven
“Smooth and magnetic . . . The translucent simplicity of Wait’s prose lends a crystalline quality to the scenes, whether humdrum, horrific or, ultimately, healing.”—Kirkus Reviews
Rebecca Wait grew up in the Oxfordshire countryside and read English at Oxford University. She is the author of prize-winning short stories and plays, as well as critically acclaimed novels The View on the Way Down (2013) and The Followers (2017). She writes and teaches in London.