Having fled Rome and a stultifying marriage, Isabel Osmond is in London, brooding on the recent disclosure of her husband's shocking, years-long betrayal of her. What should she do now, and which way should she turn, in the emotional labyrinth where she has been trapped for so long? Reawakened by grief and the knowledge of having been grievously wronged, she determines to resume her youthful quest for freedom and independence.
Soon Isabel must return to Italy and confront her husband, and seek to break his powerful hold on her. But will she succeed in outwitting him, and securing her revenge?
Mrs Osmond is a masterly novel of betrayal, corruption and moral ambiguity, from the Man Booker Prize-winning author of The Sea.
A worthy sequel... His book is not only an impressive recreation of James's atmospheres and pacing, but also full of minor cliff-hangers and page-turning suspenses that keep you guessing * Observer *
A brilliant feat of literary ventriloquism... Richly enjoyable and enthralling, this exercise in creative empathy is a sequel of very high finish * Sunday Times *
John Banville is one of the best novelists in English, and an expert ventriloquist, among other things . . . Mrs Osmond is both a remarkable novel in its own right and a superb pastiche -- Edmund White * Guardian *
It's brilliant. It's John Banville camouflaged as Henry James - it's very, very interesting -- Cillian Murphy, star of Peaky Blinders and Dunkirk
Written with near-Jamesian elegance * Mail on Sunday *
John Banville has long been the most distinctive Irish novelist of his generation * Irish Independent *
This is a superbly written novel ... Mrs Osmond represents an important contribution to Banville's impressive oeuvre * Evening Standard *
John Banville is simply the finest writer at work today, a prolific prose stylist whose work has only deepened in quality throughout his career -- John Boyne * Irish Times *
Banville is one of the writers I admire the most - few people can create an image as beautifully or precisely -- Hanya Yanagihara, author of the Booker-shortlisted 'A Little Life'
This engrossing and often beautiful novel is a true work of art that rewards careful reading * Daily Telegraph on 'Blue Guitar' *
The Booker prize winning author - widely regarded as one of the greatest writers in English today - has produced what many already consider a literary masterpiece * Sunday Independent on 'Ancient Light' *
Banville's sequel to Henry James's "Portrait of a Lady" follows Isabel Archer back to Rome and the possible end of her marriage * New York Times Books of the Year *
An astonishing act of literary ventriloquism * Observer Books of the Year *
Uncannily good at replicating James's style, it pays appealing tribute to his genius * Sunday Times Books of the Year *
John Banville channelled Henry James in the Portrait of a Lady sequel * Guardian Books of the Year *