RaveThe Guardian (UK)Keiran Goddard has written something like the universal love story ... No pain is unique, and all pain is unique. This is the paradox that powers Hourglass. I have rarely read a book that captures so succinctly the way that all lovers must (at least a little bit) believe they are the only people to ever feel this feeling, and the way that that is (at least a little bit) true ... The world of Goddard’s novel exists vividly on the page and yet to the narrator he is the only real person in it ... Hourglass sits somewhere between prose and poetry.
RaveThe GuardianThough written in three timelines – each mostly compelling in their own right – this is Kate’s story. But to what extent are our stories ever our own? ... It is tempting to map Freud’s real-life family (tempestuous sculptor Lucian, for example) on to the novel’s complex interplay of characters, but to pin this book down as autobiographical does it a great disservice. I Couldn’t Love You More is a crafted novel, made with great skill and attention, the way Felix makes his sculptures, the way Kate makes her painted trees ... You want, instinctively, to say that this is a book of echoes, but nothing could be further from the truth. Things are much more real than echoes. Each generation of women lives wholly, not merely as shadows of the other but completely themselves. The novel is about the patterns of being in this one family; and the patterns of being a woman; and the patterns of being a person, wherever and whenever we are alive.