In brief: Unsettled Ground; Genesis; Inferno – reviews

Twins unravel their family history when their mother dies; myths, science and the origins of the universe; and a harrowing account of postpartum psychosis

Unsettled Ground

Claire Fuller
Fig Tree, £14.99, pp304

Fifty-one-year-old twins Julius and Jeanie still live with their mother, Dot, in a ramshackle rural cottage. Their father died years earlier in a tractor accident for which the twins blame local landowner Spencer Rawson. When Dot dies, they begin to unravel their family history as they struggle to lead independent lives. Fuller explores the painful realities of poverty and social isolation with immense sensitivity in this multilayered and emotionally astute novel.

Genesis: The Story of How Everything Began

Guido Tonelli
Profile Books, £16.99, pp240

Particle physicist Tonelli was one of the leading scientists in the discovery of the Higgs boson. In Genesis, he explores the origins of the universe, producing an accessible and highly engaging account of the latest theories and discoveries. In seven chapters, mimicking the biblical creation story, he takes us on a journey from the big bang to the evolution of humans, blending Greek mythology with scientific exploration in a narrative that’s lyrical and exhilarating in equal measure.

Inferno: A Memoir of Motherhood and Madness

Catherine Cho
Bloomsbury, £9.99, pp272
(paperback)

When Cho’s son was three months old, she and her husband James travelled from London to the US to introduce their baby to family and friends. There, relatives questioned Cho’s decision not to observe Korean traditions about newborns, compounding the anxiety and insecurity of her early motherhood. What followed was a period of postpartum psychosis, including a 12-day stay on a psychiatric ward. Cho weaves fractured memoir with Korean history and culture in a raw exploration of mental illness.

To order Unsettled Ground, Genesis or Inferno go to guardianbookshop.com. Delivery charges may apply

Contributor

Hannah Beckerman

The GuardianTramp

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