Cold Earth | Granta

  • Published: 03/06/2010
  • ISBN: 9781847082862
  • Granta Books
  • 288 pages

Cold Earth

Sarah Moss

Six young people meet on an archaeological dig in a remote corner of Greenland. Excavating the unsettling remains of a Norse society under attack, they also come to uncover their own demons, as it becomes apparent that a plague pandemic is sweeping across the planet and communication with the outside world is breaking down. Increasingly unsure whether their missives will ever reach their destination, each of the characters writes a letter to someone close to them, trying to make sense of their situation and expressing their fears and dwindling hope of ever getting back home …

Moss is such a master at evoking the suspense of both the dread and the anticipation of this situation that readers will be tempted to turn to the end of the book to relieve anxieties. Try to control yourself, if only for the sake of appreciating her technique

Jane Smiley, Guardian

A sure-fire success

Margaret Drabble, Guardian

Moss's stark writing delivers stinging splashes of cold water. Every element of the novel is distilled for purity of purpose. Holding it, the white cover and the blue edges imitate an artefact carved from ice

The Times

The Author

SARAH MOSS is the author of eight novels, including Ghost Wall and The Tidal Zone. Her account of her time in Iceland, Names for the Sea, was shortlisted for the 2013 RSL Ondaatje Prize and she has three times been shortlisted for the Wellcome Book Prize.

More about the author →

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‘Suddenly, your heart began; suddenly in the darkness of your mother’s womb there was a crackle and a flash and out of nothing, the current began to run.’

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‘I can’t think, my mother said as we sat down, why people think a play that’s all about unsanctioned sexual desire is suitable for little girls.’