Jessie Buckley, star of “Wild Rose” and “Chernobyl“, will narrate the audiobook of Kiran Millwood Hargrave’s The Mercies (Picador).

The recording will be released on 6th February 2020 to coincide with the print and e-book publication. Picador acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Hellie Ogden at Janklow & Nesbit for the book, currently scheduled to publish in 15 countries globally.

Millwood Hargrave’s first novel for adults is inspired by real events, beginning on Christmas Eve 1617, when the sea around the remote Norwegian island of Vardø is thrown into a reckless storm.

The synopsis explains: “As Maren Magnusdatter watches, 40 fishermen, including her father and brother, are lost to the waves, the menfolk of Vardø wiped out in an instant. Now the women must fend for themselves. Eighteen months later, a sinister figure arrives. Summoned from Scotland to take control of a place at the edge of the civilized world, Absalom Cornet knows what he needs to do to bring the women of Vardø to heel. With him travels his young wife, Ursa. In Vardø, and in Maren, Ursa finds something she has never seen before: independent women. But Absalom sees only a place untouched by God and flooded with a mighty and terrible evil, one he must root out at all costs.”

Millwood Hargrave is an award-winning poet, playwright, and novelist whose work for children includes The Girl of Ink & Stars (Chicken House).

Irish-born RADA graduate Buckley has starred in Michael Pearce’s critically acclaimed “Beast” alongside Johnny Flynn, in Tom Harper’s “Wild Rose” alongside Julie Walters and Sophie Okenedo, and in the HBO/Sky Atlantic series “Chernobyl” with Emily Watson and Jared Harris. In 2018, she won most promising newcomer award at the British Independent Film Awards and Best British or Irish Actress at the Critics Circle Awards.

Picador will also be producing special editions of The Mercies for independent bookshops and Waterstones as well as a main market edition, which will all feature their own exclusive endpapers. The author will be speaking at launch events in London with Waterstones Gower St on 6th February and in Oxford at Blackwell’s, Broad Street, on 8th February. Publication will be supported by a nationwide UK book tour of events and the novel has been chosen for the BBC Radio 2 Book Club.

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