'The day our child was conceived, someone else arrived. She was there as the cells fused, like a ghost.'
Richard and Lelia's child is conceived in a moment of giggling chaos as they dress for a Christmas party. When they arrive, rudely late and still glowing, they barely register a slight, drab woman in the hall. Sylvie.
As their baby grows, so too does the presence of that barely noticeable figure. Slowly Richard finds himself seduced by Sylvie's subtle, almost imperceptible charm. As he grows more ambivalent about the approaching birth of his child, Lelia finds herself haunted by painful secrets of her past. And Sylvie seems to be nowhere, yet everywhere. She's as invisible as she wants to be, and that is the source of her power. Beware of mice.
How far can you trust even those you love? A story of compulsion, desire, darkness and betrayal, Sleep With Me moves towards a breathtaking climax. It confirms Joanna Briscoe as a major literary talent.
Joanna Briscoe is the author of two novels, Mothers and Other Lovers,which won the Betty Trask Award; and Skin, which was runner-up for the Encore Award. Her short stories have featured in several anthologies. She was a columnist for the Independentand the Guardian and writes regularly for all the major newspapers and magazines. Joanna Briscoe lives in London with her family.
'A formidably talented writer. Her prose is polished, sophisticated and seductive.'
'Handles the more risky conflation of sexual and family love with admirable assurance.'
'Briscoe is refining erotic writing into something quite unusual and transfixing.'
Independent on Sunday
'She mixes deeply sensual writing with stark truths.'
Mail on Sunday