We know him mainly for his trilogy about Cicero (Imperium, Lustrum, Dictator) and for his novels set in and around the Second World War (Fatherland, Enigma and, most recently, Munich). Now “the master of the intelligent thriller”, as one critic has dubbed him, is back – but this time in an entirely different historical era: 15th-century England.
In the year 1468, a young priest arrives in an Exmoor village to take the funeral of his predecessor. But why did the old parson die? Is there a link to his passion for collecting the ancient artefacts – fragments of glass, human bones, coins – that are strewn around the surrounding countryside? As the priest is drawn into the isolated community, everything he believes about himself, faith and history is tested to destruction.
Harris devotees should consider themselves lucky that The Second Sleep has seen the light of day: last year the author, who lives in the village of Kintbury, a few miles from Marlborough, revealed that his Golden Retriever puppy had ‘devoured’ the manuscript of a first draft. “It must have a meaty plot,” responded one fan.
The ticket price for this event includes a free signed copy of the book and a glass of wine on the evening.