Astral Travel

Elizabeth Baines author


Publisher:Salt Publishing

Published:15th Nov '20

Currently unavailable, and unfortunately no date known when it will be back

Astral Travel cover

Astral Travel, about a charismatic but troubled Irishman and his effect on his family, explores the way that the secrets forged by cultural, religious and sexual prejudice can reverberate down the generations. It’s also about telling stories, and the fact that the tales we tell about ourselves can profoundly affect the lives of others. In a framing narration that exposes the slippery and contingent nature of story, an adult daughter, brought up on romantic lore about her now dead father but having experienced him very differently, tells how she tried to write about him, only to come up against too many mysteries and clashing versions of the family’s past. Yet when a buried truth emerges, the mysteries can be solved, and, via storytelling’s power of empathy, she finally makes sense of it all.

A fine novel, written with great skill and empathy.

-- Susan Osborne * A Life In Books *

Baines’s beautiful, evocative and insightful writing transforms what might have been a difficult, family drama into something far more extraordinary and optimistic. At its heart, Astral Travel is a novel about both the slipperiness of story-telling and its redemptive power. An utterly beguiling read!

-- Deborah Grace * Open Up Magazines *

I really loved this story... but it's not for the faint hearted. Highly recommended.

-- The Mole * Our Book Reviews *

Astral Travel is written so vividly, in such a freewheeling style, that the narrative twists and turns are navigated with ease . . . By the time I’d finished this wonderful novel, I was hoping for a sequel

-- Ailsa Cox * Litro *

A longer book than many I read but one that never felt drawn out with unnecessary detail. The device of a novel within a novel, of memoir presented as fiction, worked well. A study of family and the many cracks in shared memory. A lingering and recommended read.

-- Jackie Law * neverimitate *

Baines’ prose is both intricately beautiful and abruptly brutal, with every word balancing precariously on the undercurrent of rage that flows throughout the novel. She depicts the damp grey of poverty, the white hot of anger, the explosive orange of indignation, and the flush purple of secrecy with indisputable talent and flair.

* Bookmunch *

At three short of four hundred pages, Astral Travel is a longish book, but it never dragged; nor was it a purely sensational read. This fine novel was, however, emotionally gripping, Baines shows great empathy towards her characters and I was totally engrossed by it, especially in Jo’s search for the truth. A book to lose yourself in – heartily recommended.

* Shiny New Books *

Be prepared to become involved in the story as it unfolds, piece by piece, in random order, like a jigsaw, only revealing the picture to the reader and narrator at the end of the telling. He is a man that sees the worst when there's nothing to see. He's prone to very violent fits of rage that he turns against his family. But he's a man protecting a secret - one that the writer doesn't know but her sister thought everyone in the family knew. It's a very tumultuous journey for the reader but a journey worth staying on.

* Our Book Reviews Onli

ISBN: 9781784632199

Dimensions: 198mm x 129mm x 29mm

Weight: unknown

416 pages