Peach by Emma Glass
Peach is the debut novel from senior paediatric research nurse at Evelina London Children’s Hospital, Emma Glass.
Emma hides the blood and grease between her legs as she creeps past her loving family. She pretends she hasn’t been vomiting in the street, locking herself away to sew up her private wounds and trying to pretend everything is fine. But as the days pass, she sees her attacker wherever she goes and as he comes after her loved ones, she takes the matter into her own hands.
This 98-page novella is something incredibly special. The after-effects of Peach’s sexual assault are written in a sharp, powerful prose that veers from beautifully poetic to stomach-churningly graphic.
‘The blood cells in my cheeks have risen to the surface and made shapes that spell the words SOMeONe help.’
Peach is not an easy read but is all the more gratifying for it. Glass plays with pace, structure and surrealism to create something truly wonderful. I’m in awe of how someone can put together a piece of work that is this unique. Food is a reoccurring theme throughout the novella, from Peach being a vegetarian and her attacker continually being referred to as a sausage, to the baby of her family being described as sugary sweet and melting. While Glass plays with style, she loses nothing in character building. Peach may be bruised but is never described as broken by the experience. She refuses to be a victim and it is clear from the first few pages, as she sews herself up, that she’s a strong young woman that won’t be beaten.
There are only a handful of novels that I have finished but instantly wanted to read again and Peach is one of them. One reason being, I don’t even know if I fully understood this novel. I think there are so many layers to the writing style, that to appreciate it all in one go might be a bit of a push. The more I mull it over, the more I get from it, the more I understand the delicate detail.
Peach is a powerful and unsettling story that I can’t stop thinking about. It’s early days but there is no way this isn’t going to be one of my literary highlights of 2018. Thank you Emma Glass, you’ve blown my mind a bit…and I loved it.
Buy your copy of Peach by Emma Glass