Fifteen-year-old Celia Bonnet, nicknamed “Rat,” lives a peaceful life with her mother, Vanessa, a free-spirited local beauty, and Morgan, the nine-year-old orphan they have taken in. Their farmhouse compound, nestled just north of the Spanish Catalan border, is surrounded by artichoke fields and glittering ocean, cliffs where they can spy down on the rich tourists below. But when Vanessa falls for a dangerous new boyfriend, Rat must leave this place she loves.
Together with Morgan, Rat sets out for London to find the father she has never met and the man who might finally explain to Rat where she belongs. An enthralling novel with a luminous sense of place, Rat is the story of a bold, rousing heroine for our times.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
About the Author
Fernanda Eberstadt is the author of four previous novels and one book of nonfiction. Her essays and criticism have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Vogue, Vanity Fair, and Commentary. She lives in London with her husband and two children.
Praise for Rat…
“Fernanda Eberstadt’s dazzling Rat is a contemporary French fairy tale in which a fifteen year old Cinderella named Rat relies on her own goodness and grit to join the disparate halves of her unlikely, charmed, and difficult life. Eberstadt’s beautifully written tour de force touches on children parenting parents, abandonment and bravery, the ragtag legacy of the 60’s, modern terror, and the fact that, sometimes, in response to valiant effort, things still go miraculously right. Eberstadt is savvy and uncompromising, and Rat is wonderfully alive.”
—Jayne Anne Phillips, author of Lark and Termite
“That fugitive grace, that rag-picking of hope from ruin, resurfaces in Eberstadt’s shrewd and sensuous fifth novel, Rat . . . Eberstadt is at her stylistic best when ranging through a “semiclandestinely inhabited” landscape of artichoke fields with sere gray leaves and “purplish bruise-colored” fruit, of electric skies over ratty storefront churches and glittering seas.”
—Cathleen Medwick, The New York Times Book Review