Bed: A Novel
Reminiscent of such novels as The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time and What’s Eating Gilbert Grape , a darkly funny and surprisingly tender debut novel about two brothers, one of whom refuses to leave his bed on his twenty-fifth birthday.
Written by a talented and award-winning young journalist, Bed was the first winner of a new high-profile prize for unpublished manuscripts announced during the 2010 London Book Fair, and has been hailed as a “momentous” debut in the UK.
Mal Ede, part-prophet and part-tyrant, is an eccentric eldest child who undergoes an extravagant metamorphosis. On his twenty-fifth birthday, disillusioned with the limits of adulthood, Mal goes to bed and never emerges again. Narrated by Mal’s quieter, diligent younger brother, Bed details how Mal’s extreme and grotesque transformation began—and its ramifications on his haunted, fractured parents, his overshadowed brother, and the woman they both love, Lou. Over three decades the narrator tries, fails, and fails again to escape the exceptional presence of his older brother. Their father is forced to confront what legacy he will leave, their mother to abandon a life of her own.
Darkly funny and unexpectedly tender, Bed is a clever reflection on mortality, obesity, celebrity, depression, and the broken promises of adulthood.