Gallic Books imprint Aardvark Bureau has acquired a "spectacular" novel by Charles Lambert titled Prodigal.
Founder and m.d. Jane Aitken bought UK and British Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, from Isobel Dixon of Blake Friedmann.
Aardvark published Lambert’s "chilling" novel The Children’s Home in 2016. "Demonstrating his striking versatility as a writer, Lambert’s latest offering takes a step away from the mysterious and macabre", said the publisher. "Instead, he interrogates the nature of family, trust, death and what we do to one another in the name of love, all within the wider context of a beautiful, yet troubling, queer coming-of-age tale."
A family drama told across three timelines, Prodigal plunges readers into the irregular life of the hapless Jeremy: a man in his late 50s trying to scrape together a living in Paris by writing ham-erotica under the lubricious guise of ‘Nathalie Cray’. When his all-but-estranged older sister, Rachel, calls to tell him that their father is on his deathbed, Jeremy reluctantly travels back to his family home in the depths of Whitstable. Confronted with a life that he was ever-eager to escape, his return marks the start of an emotionally-fraught journey into his – and Rachel’s – chequered past.
Aitken said: "Charles Lambert’s writing just gets better and better. In tackling the complexities of familial love, he has written a novel reminiscent of St Aubyn or Hollinghurst, and the result is raw, provocative and deeply moving."