Isabelle is alone in Strasbourg. The day after her partner leaves to travel abroad, she receives news of her father's suicide, his body found hanging in a park back home in Crystal Palace. Isabelle misses her flight back to London and a new university job, opting to stay in her partner's empty flat over the winter. Obsessed with the many strange coincidences in Strasbourg's turbulent history, Isabelle seeks to slowly dissolve into the past, succumbing to visions and dreams as she develops her meticulous research about the city. Stalked by the unnerving spirit of the Erl-King she fears something else has died along with her father; the spectres of Europe communicating a hidden truth beneath the melancholy. How Pale the Winter Has Made Us rummages through the crumbling ruins of a life, building cartographies of place and death under a darkening sky.
'One of the most interesting and original young British writers about landscape, culture and people that I know; consistently adventurous in his explorations of place as a novelist, essayist, critic and film-maker.' Robert Macfarlane