It is with great pleasure that Europa Editions makes this Booker Prize short-listed novel newly available to the legions of Gardam fans. Originally published in Great Britain in 1978, the novel describes Margaret Marsh¹s coming of age one summer between the world wars. Caught in the backwash of a fervently religious father, a mother bitterly nostalgic for what might have been, the tea and sympathy of some thoroughly secular neighbors and the bawdy jokes of her nanny Lydia, Margaret¹s world hurtles towards a shattering moment of truth. Drama, tragedy and a touch of farce lend themselves to Gardam's typically eloquent prose. With subtlety and precision, God on the Rocks provides an intimate portrait of the tensions that divide men and women, present and past, and the love and sorrow that lingers throughout. Jane Gardam's reputation in the United States has been greatly enlarged by the critical acclaim and commercial success garnered by her latest novels, last year¹s Man in the Wooden Hat and her masterpiece Old Filth. Now, newcomers and fans alike can enjoy the pleasure of the splendid writing that established Gardam¹s considerable canon some four decades ago.
Jane Gardam has been twice awarded the Whitbread Prize and was also a Booker prize finalist. She is winner of the David Higham Prize, the Royal Society for Literature’s Winifred Holtby Prize, the Katherine Mansfield Prize, and the Silver Pen Award from PEN. Her novels include God on the Rocks, shortlisted for the Booker Prize; Old Filth, finalist for the Orange Prize; The Man in the Wooden Hat, finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; and Last Friends, finalist for the Folio Award. She lives in the south of England near the sea. In 1999 Jane Gardam was awarded the Heywood Hill Literary Prize in recognition of a distinguished literary career.