The Master Bedroom: A Novel

Front Cover
Henry Holt and Company, Jul 24, 2007 - Fiction - 352 pages
15 Reviews

A single woman at loose ends becomes the object of two men's affections—a father and his teenage son—in this sly, richly drawn novel

After more than twenty years in London, Kate Flynn has returned to her family home in Wales to care for her aging mother. Having cast off her academic career, she is unmoored, and when she runs into a childhood friend, David Roberts, at a concert, she finds herself falling for him, although she knows she's grasping at anything to fill the sudden emptiness of her life.

For his part, David's marriage isn't as solid as it looks—his wife, Suzie, has begun acting strangely, moving out of their bedroom, neglecting their children, and disappearing for days at a time—and he begins to seek refuge with Kate from the newfound chaos of his life.

David's seventeen-year-old son, Jamie, is also drawn to Kate's eccentricity and her strange, glamorous old house full of books and music and history. As both father and son set about their parallel courtships, Tessa Hadley's intricate, graceful novel explores the tangled web of connections between parents and children, revealing how each generation replays the stories of the one that came before, in new and sometimes startling patterns.


What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AmberMcWilliams - LibraryThing

Hadley's clear prose, hyper-awareness of the joys and difficulties of ordinary life, and light, wry sense of humour make her novels an inevitable pleasure. This is no exception; the quiet struggles of the characters are real and engaging in a way few authors manage. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - CatieN - LibraryThing

This is a dark, moody book. Kate, the main character, is spoiled, self-centered, shallow, and mean. David, another pivotal character, is uptight and also selfish in his own way. Jamie, David's 17-year ... Read full review

Selected pages


Back Matter

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2007)

Tessa Hadley teaches literature and creative writing at Bath Spa University. She is the author of two novels, Everything Will Be All Right and Accidents in the Home, both available from Picador. Accidents in the Home was long-listed for the Guardian First Book Award. Her short stories have appeared in The New Yorker. She lives in Cardiff, Wales.

Bibliographic information