With her new novel, Kennedy one of Britain's most popular literary authors offers an emotionally charged narrative about a young woman and her battle with alcoholism. Hannah Luckraft is 30 years old and trapped in an unbelievably tedious job: selling cardboard boxes. Her only relief is alcohol, and when she's not at work, her days take their shape from her drinking. Her brother, once a close friend, has decided that she is a lost cause and leaves her to her own devices. For Hannah who frequents local bars, binges without shame and makes no attempt at rehabilitation the future looks bleak indeed. Oddly enough, what makes this narrative appealing is Hannah herself. As a heroine, she is ultimately likeable, a witty, unremorseful narrator who brazenly confesses her sins, discussing periods of blackouts and hallucinations. When she meets Robert, who is also an alcoholic, the two become fast friends, eventually embarking on a strange love affair that involves booze as much as it does romance or tender feeling. Hannah soon finds herself traveling to Canada and Montreal, in hopes of finding a home and filling the emptiness that plagues her. Kennedy never sentimentalizes Hannah's story or asks for pity from her audience. She writes with great flair and insight about the displacement and disconnection that characterize the modern world.

A reading group guide is available www.readinggroupcenter.com.

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