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In Noonday, Pat Barker - the Man Booker-winning author of the definitive WWI trilogy, Regeneration - turns for the first time to WWII. 'Afterwards, it was the horses she remembered, galloping towards them out of the orange-streaked darkness, their manes and tails on fire...' London, the Blitz, autumn 1940. As the bombs fall on the blacked-out city, ambulance driver Elir Brooke races from bomb sites to hospitals trying to save the lives of injured survivors, working alongside former friend Kit Neville, while her husband Paul works as an air-raid warden. Once fellow students at the Slade School of Fine Art, before the First World War destroyed the hopes of their generation, they w find themselves caught in ather war, this time at home. As the bombing intensifies, the constant risk of death makes all three of them reach out for quick consolation. Old loves and obsessions re-surface until Elir is brought face to face with an almost impossible choice. Completing the story of Elir Brooke, Paul Tarrant and Kit Neville, begun with Life Class and continued with Toby's Room, Noonday is both a stand-alone vel and the climax of a trilogy. Writing about the Second World War for the first time, Pat Barker brings the besieged and haunted city of London into electrifying life in her most powerful vel since the Regeneration trilogy. 'Bold, hard-hitting, unforgettable...a virtuoso rendition of the bombing, as huge swathes of London blaze away with the brightest of bright lights...Barker shows us how the city's finest moment was indubitably also its most terrifying, with lumius and unsparing insight.' Independent on Sunday 'Barker's command of detail and gift for metaphor are as sharp as ever...As a tribute to those who dared and suffered on the home front, Noonday is in the first rank.' Antony Garner, Mail on Sunday 'Narrative jumps colourfully alive, fizzes with energy.' Michele Roberts, Independent 'Tremendously good.' Daily Mail 'Pat Barker's Noonday marked the end of ather war trilogy which shows end to her talent in describing how conflicts rupture the soul.' Arifa Akbar, Independent Praise for Pat Barker: 'She is t only a fine chronicler of war but of human nature.' Independent 'A brilliant stylist...Barker delves unflinchingly into the enduring mysteries of human motivation.' Sunday Telegraph 'You go to her for plain truths, a driving storyline and a clear eye, steadily facing the history of our world.' The Guardian Other titles in the trilogy: Life Class Toby's Room
Pat Barker was born in 1943. She is the author of Union Street, Blow your House Down, The Century's Daughter, The Man Who Wasn't There, the Regeneration Trilogy (Regeneration, The Eye in the Door and The Ghost Road), Another World, Border Crossing, Double Vision, and the Life Class Trilogy (Life Class, Toby's Room and Noonday). Pat Barker lives in Durham.