The Year of the Ladybird - Graham Joyce Summer of 1976, the hottest since records began and a young man leaves behind his student days and learns how to grow up. A first job in a holiday camp beckons. But with political and racial tensions simmering under the cloudless summer skies there is a price to be paid for his new-found freedom and independence. A price that will come back to haunt him, even in the bright sunlight of summer.

“As with SOME KIND OF FAIRY TALE, Graham Joyce has crafted a deceptively simple tale of great power. With beautiful prose, wonderful characters and a perfect evocation of time and place, this is a novel that transcends the boundaries between the everyday and the supernatural while celebrating the power of both.”


Ahhh yes…1976, the year of the endless summer... "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" had been number one forever, punk rock was waiting in the wings, jumbo flares and Concord collars were de rigueur oh and yes the Ladybird plague...It really was the most bizarre experience , almost like an alien invasion, I remember people shovelling buckets full of them off pavements.

It is during that this rather surreal time that Graham Joyce sets his latest novel. Joyce's novels have a dreamlike quality, very often with the characters (and reader) unsure as to whether the experiences are real or part of a daydream or, more often than not, a nightmare.

"Ladybirds" is no exception, it is like one of those summer days in 1976 hazy and shimmering but with an undercurrent of oppression that something dark is swarming on the horizon and it is not going to be pleasant.

A beautiful poignant book that explores guilt, forgiveness and redemption.