While Emma Abram prepares for Christmas, her husband Chris frets about starvation and societal collapse.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. Chris has turned off the heating. He treks his sons across the Moss in the drubbing rain. And he has other plans that, if voiced, Emma would surely veto. But it’s easier to ask forgiveness than permission.
Emma longs to lower a rope and winch Chris from the pit of his worries. But he doesn't want to be rescued or even reassured - he wants to pull her in after him.
If you believe your world is going to end, how do you live? And what if, while preparing for disaster, you unwittingly precipitate it?
A beautifully written, intimate novel about a marriage in crisis and a community on the brink, shot through with compassion and humour. Don't miss it. - The Bookseller
A beautifully realised story of a family falling apart under the pressures of our age. - i Paper
Absolutely superb. So timely, and so deeply human, a novel which takes us right into the heart of a marriage and at the same time grapples with the most crucial issue of our age. It's bursting with compassion and wisdom - I felt for these characters every step of the way. - Shelley Harris
When The Lights Go Out is a sharply observed, deftly told tale of rupture and repair. In it, with characteristic wit and humanity, Bray shows us the necessity and the impossibility of preparing for disaster, and reminds us of both the fragility and capacity of love. - Jenn Ashworth
When The Lights Go Out is exactly the novel we need in these times: it’s complex, nuanced, and compassionate, frightening and heartening. The writing is beautiful, the characters memorable, the story uncomfortably realistic and relatable. - Stephanie Butland
Carys Bray is extraordinarily skilled at creating characters who feel like they might live down the road from you. Through exquisite use of language and observation, she examines the intricacies of family life in ways which have you laughing one moment and biting your nails with worry the next. I have thought about this novel an incredible amount since I first read it and am sure it will bring great pleasure to both Bray's existing readership and to new readers who are bound to root for Emma, Chris and their family. - Sarah Franklin