WITNESS THE NIGHT and THE MASTER OF BRUGES longlisted for Waverton Good Read 2011


Kishwar Desai's award winning WITNESS THE NIGHT and Terence Morgan's THE MASTER OF BRUGES have both been longlisted as Waverton Good Reads.

The award, which has run since 2003, chooses 50 debut novels written by British authors, from which the citizens of Waverton and nearby Styal Prison and Bickerton select their favourite.

Previous winners include Mark Haddon's 'The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time' and Marina Lewycka's 'A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian'.


'The novel that gets to the heart of tradition-bound India' -- The Pioneer

'It is with no surprise that we heard about Kishwar Desai winning the Costa First Novel Award 2010 earlier this week. Her novel, WITNESS THE NIGHT is a poignant and harrowing story set in a small town in India…' -- DSC South Asian Literary Festival

'Powerful' -- Hazel Larkin, Women's View on News

'Terrific' -- Toby Clements, The Telegraph

 'A powerfully-felt, shocking and moving indictment of cruelty and oppression' -- Maggie Gee, author of THE WHITE FAMILY

'Social justice campaigner Desai's debut novel is very much an issue-based book, the issue being "gendercide" and, for those girls who survive birth, oppression in Indian society. Set in Punjab, Witness the Night begins when 14-year-old Durga is found beaten and tied to a bed inside a house which contains 13 butchered corpses. Social worker Simran Singh, independent and scandalously untraditional in her behaviour, is tasked with getting the mute and traumatised girl, who is suspected of murdering her relatives, to talk. Singh finds a web of deceit and corruption as she uncovers the way in which a family has sacrificed its female members in order to preserve status. There's a bit too much theorising, but this sad and thought-provoking tale is certainly worth the read.' -- Laura Wilson, The Guardian

'Very important themes [and a] very appealing central character.' -- Jane Garvey, BBC Radio 4 Woman's Hour

'Essential reading.' -- Nihal, BBC Asian Network


'Full of exquisite descriptions of Memling's art and times, THE MASTER OF BRUGES is a gripping debut from a bracing new voice in historical fiction.' -- History Times (online)

'A terrific historical page-turner. An engaging, absorbing read.' -- Elizabeth Chadwick

For more information on the award,including the full longlist, click here.