Amy Myers is known for her short stories and historical novels featuring Victorian chef Auguste Didier and chimney sweep Tom Wasp. Her contemporary series features classic car detective Jack Colby, and she is currently working on a new 1920s mystery series featuring Nell Drury, chef at Kent’s Wychbourne Court.
Nothing on Earth is Conor O’Callaghan’s first novel, but he is the author of several collections of his poetry for which he has won many awards. The poet in him is evident in this novel for it evokes an atmosphere rather than images alone.
It begins when an elderly bachelor answers a bang on his door during an August heatwave. A distraught young girl, skinny, unkempt and ill fed, needs help. She has come from the family home, though those words are at odds with an all but empty housing estate, rather than homes.
Her father has vanished, and so it appears, has her mother; and others in her short life.
But did they really exist? Does she exist?
Her story, whether real or fantasy, is gradually revealed as the narrator is drawn into it. The early part of the novel is hard to get to grips with, but I would urge you keep on going, for what follows in a word is, mesmerizing.