The prize-winning, bestselling author of Boy Snow Bird, What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours, and Peaces returns with a bewitching and imaginative novel.Influenced by the mysterious place gingerbread holds in classic children's stories, beloved novelist Helen Oyeyemi invites readers into a delightful tale of a surprising family legacy, in which the inheritance is a recipe.
Perdita Lee may appear to be your average British schoolgirl; Harriet Lee may seem just a working mother trying to penetrate the school social hierarchy; but there are signs that they might not be as normal as they think they are. For one thing, they share a gold-painted, seventh-floor walk-up apartment with some surprisingly verbal vegetation. And then there's the gingerbread they make. Londoners may find themselves able to take or leave it, but it's very popular in Druhástrana, the far-away (or, according to many sources, non-existent) land of Harriet Lee's early youth. The world's truest lover of the Lee family gingerbread, however, is Harriet's charismatic childhood friend Gretel Kercheval --a figure who seems to have had a hand in everything (good or bad) that has happened to Harriet since they met.
Decades later, when teenaged Perdita sets out to find her mother's long-lost friend, it prompts a new telling of Harriet's story. As the book follows the Lees through encounters with jealousy, ambition, family grudges, work, wealth, and real estate, gingerbread seems to be the one thing that reliably holds a constant value. Endlessly surprising and satisfying, written with Helen Oyeyemi's inimitable style and imagination, it is a true feast for the reader.
Helen Oyeyemi is the author of five novels, most recently White Is for Witching, which won a 2010 Somerset Maugham Award, Mr. Fox, which won a 2012 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, and Boy, Snow, Bird. In 2013, she was named one of Granta's Best Young British Novelists. Oyeyemi is the author of the story collection What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours, winner of the PEN Open Book Award, along with six novels, including Boy, Snow, Bird, which was a finalist for the 2014 Los Angeles Times Book Prize. She lives in Prague.
- Publisher: Riverhead Books; Reprint edition (March 3, 2020)
- Language: English
- Paperback: 288 pages
- ISBN-10: 1594634661
- ISBN-13: 9781594634666
- Item Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8 inches