Native Rites is a book about a set of people who will do whatever it takes to safeguard their own, precious, privileged existences. A young couple move to a new rural home. Miles commutes to the city each day leaving his American wife Alison to get to know the locals.
One September day they both visit the ancient bonfire ritual. Maybe Alison was drunk. Maybe not. But she felt sure something terrible happened, and that at least some of those close to her knew it too.
Is she paranoid? Or is there really some dark conspiracy happening in this small piece of paradise? Alison is determined to find out, whatever the cost, however much the truth may shatter her illusions about the cosy, comfortable green heaven she’s found herself in.
Native Rites asks how far we would go to defend our notion of Englishness. Answer: as far as we need.
The landscape in which the book is set is still glorious, and hopefully a little too remote for the house builders and sightless urban politicians of England to despoil it soon. And you can visit without fear of winding up in the middle of some secret, sacrificial rite. Take a copy of Rites to the area of east Kent, between Wye, Folkestone and Canterbury, and you will encounter strange commons called Minnis, and beautiful remote villages that look as if they haven’t changed for centuries. You may even bump into the occasional author too.
Now available for the first time as an ebook on Kindle
The second Pieter Vos book, The Wrong Girl, will appear in May in the UK from Pan Macmillan. The Dutch version, Het Verkeerde Meisje, will be out from Boekerij in September.
And look out for David’s first Italian novel in some years, The Flood. A standalone set in Florence mainly in 1986 it will be published by Severn House in the UK in July and in the US in October.