UQP acquires the latest novel from Lucy Neave
UQP is delighted to announce that we have acquired Lucy Neave’s stunning second novel, Believe In Me, from Gaby Naher at Left Bank Literary.
Set between the USA and Australia, Believe In Me focuses on a daughter’s attempt to piece together her mother Sarah’s early life. We follow Sarah’s journey from her home in upstate New York to Idaho, where she is sent to accompany a missionary. When Sarah falls pregnant she is despatched to relatives in Sydney to give birth at a home for unmarried mothers, where she is pressured to give up her baby, Bethany, for adoption. As Bethany learns more about her mother’s life, she comes to accept her own history and identity.
Lucy Neave says: ‘Believe in Me is about the extent to which the act of imagination—on the part of Bethany—may entail distortion and even forms of violence, but is nonetheless necessary: perhaps the only way a person can understand the sins and sufferings of their parents. Although Beth’s experience of growing up is entirely different from that of her mother, her attempt to engage with her mother’s life is a vital one, which enables her to address Sarah’s acts of deception, as well as her own and her mother’s persistent and conflicted attempts to show love. I am so grateful to be working with Aviva Tuffield and UQP on this novel. At a time when the value of fiction is challenged, it remains important to consider the role of imagination in our relationships and beliefs.’
Publisher Aviva Tuffield says: ‘Lucy Neave’s moving and deeply personal second novel explores the relationships between mothers and their children across three generations of one family. The book questions what we can ever really know of our parents’ early lives, despite the fact that their experiences weave ineffably into our identities and destinies. This affecting and engrossing novel is written in limpid, seemingly effortless prose.’
Lucy Neave bio
Lucy Neave is the author of the novel Who We Were (shortlisted for the ACT Book of the Year), a Griffith Review prize-winning novella set in a horse hospital in Dubai, and short stories published in Australian and American literary journals. She has spent several years living in the United States: as a Fulbright scholar completing a Masters of Fine Arts in Writing; teaching English in universities; and in 2019 as a visiting scholar in the English Department at New York University. She currently works at the ANU in Canberra where she lives with her family.