WINNER OF THE BAILEYS WOMEN'S PRIZE FOR FICTION 2016
WINNER OF THE DESMOND ELLIOT PRIZE 2016
We all do stupid things when we're kids.
Ryan Cusack's grown up faster than most - being the oldest of six with a dead mum and an alcoholic dad will do that for you.
And nobody says Ryan's stupid. Not even behind his back.
It's the people around him who are the problem. The gangland boss using his dad as a 'cleaner'. The neighbour who says she's trying to help but maybe wants something more than that. The prostitute searching for the man she never knew she'd miss until he disappeared without trace one night . . .
The only one on Ryan's side is his girlfriend Karine. If he blows that, he's all alone.
But the truth is, you don't know your own strength till you need it.