The Insect Farm

Stuart Prebble. Little, Brown/Mulholland, $26 (320p) ISBN 978-0-316-33736-6
Prebble, the CEO of the U.K. television network ITV, makes his U.S. debut with a creepy and effective modern gothic. Unprepossessing Englishman Jonathan Macguire has a mentally handicapped older brother, Roger, whose great obsession in life is his “insect farm”—an enormous living collection of bugs that he grows and feeds in various troughs, jars, and buckets in a garden shed. Jonathan is also deeply in love with his musically talented and pretty girlfriend, Harriet, and struggles with jealousy when another musician develops a crush on her. While Jonathan is away at school in Newcastle, his parents die in a fire, with Roger safe working at his insect farm. Jonathan returns home to care for his brother and is soon drawn into Roger’s strange world. When calamity strikes, the insect farm seems a perfect solution for each brother’s problems. Prebble maintains a consistent aura of dread throughout, but overwriting bogs down a tale that would probably have worked better at short story length. Agent: Deborah Schneider, Gelfman Schneider/ICM. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/04/2015
Release date: 07/07/2015
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-0-316-33737-3
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4789-0735-0
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-316-33738-0
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