‘Perhaps it will be all right, I thought. Perhaps, when I go to work, there will be peace, and Theobald will stop jumping from foot to foot, and Eva will no longer be beautiful.’
Gert Hardcastle leads a life of isolation, cataloguing the Egyptian artefacts at a northern museum – until the First Letter drops onto her desk. That’s the day she meets ballroom-dancing, iris-eyed Eva, and her careful, stilted existence begins to unravel. As Gert begins her strange courtship of Eva, she looks back on her eccentric, surreal upbringing – the rambling house with its resident Victorian ghost, her peculiar, telepathic twin, her father George with his family crocodile farm, and her beautiful, neglectful mother Jean, whose letters continue to disturb her peace.
Award-winning author Julia Darling’s classic tale of the search for love, identity and acceptance is funny, poignant and bizarre by turns, as Gert gradually learns that her journey to the future must go via the past.
This commemorative edition of 1998’s Orange Prize longlisted Crocodile Soup is a celebration of the work and life of the extraordinary woman that was Julia Darling.