When Frances Shore joins her engineer husband in Jeddah she is warned not to ask questions… Bored by days spent gossiping or patrolling with the cockroach spray, she begins to speculate about her neighbours and the empty flat above her. At first she believes the expat – rumours that it is used as a lovers’ tryst. Then a darker truth begins to unfold.
‘Writing with the verve…of Muriel Spark, and a stinging wit, Mantel’s tale of Frances’s disorientation and discovery is horrifyingly gripping. Her narrative urges the reader to suspend normal life entirely until the book is read.’ – Sunday Times
‘A memorably appalled and hellishly funny novel.’ – Guardian
‘A stunning Orwellian nightmare.’ – Literary Review