RaveThe Spectator (UK)... forget the plot: it’s the writing that puts Barry on the side of the angels. It is vivid, lyrical and awash with metaphors and quasi-biblical proverbs ... The inner lives of the characters shine with a timeless quality ... Halfway through this novel I was so much under Barry’s spell I wanted to read everything he’d ever written. By the end? Why did I feel slightly over-charmed? And is there a word for that? Goddammit, Sebastian Barry will know it.
PositiveThe Spectator (UK)... a kind of meditative triptych rooted in the tale of David and Bathsheba. The story has everything a novelist could wish for in its themes of power, lust, love, faith and conscience ... Primarily a poet, Cook writes with impressive empathy for David. There is both a painterly eye and a physicality about her prose.