A Town Called Solace was longlisted for the Booker Prize in 2021. Mary Lawson explores the relationships of three people brought together by fate and the mistakes of the past in this gripping, darkly domestic tale.

Ontario, 1972. Clara’s sister is missing. Rose had a row with their mother, stormed out of the house and simply disappeared. Eight-year-old Clara is grief-stricken and bewildered. Within hours, Liam Kane, newly divorced, newly unemployed, newly arrived in town, gets a visit from the police. What crime has he committed? Elizabeth Orchard is thinking about a crime, too, one that happened 30 years ago. It had tragic consequences, in particular for one small child. She needs to make amends.

The 2021 Booker Prize
Published by
Chatto & Windus
Publication date
Mary Lawson

Mary Lawson

About the Author

Mary Lawson has been longlisted for the Booker Prize twice, first in 2006 and again in 2021. She is a Canadian author. Her first novel, Crow Lake (2002), a tense family drama, won the 2003 McKitterick Prize.
More about Mary Lawson

A Town Called Solace began in my mind with a little girl standing at the window, watching a man carrying four big boxes, one after another, into the living room of the house next door

Listen to an extract from A Town Called Solace

Ian Lake, Maggie Huculak and  Tajja Isen bring A Town Called Solace to life in the audiobook.

Cover for A Town Called Solace on a green-coloured background.

Lawson’s writing is such that it appears effortless but, as all the strands come together to create a rich and satisfying tapestry, her genius for storytelling becomes apparent

Other nominated books by Mary Lawson

The Other Side of the Bridge