The Probable Future

A magical new novel by a world-class writer whose ability to fuse the everyday and the uncanny within a magnetically compelling and beautifully written narrative is unrivalled. When the women in the Sparrow family reach thirteen, they develop a unique ability. In young Stella Sparrow's case, the gift, both a blessing and a curse, is the ability to see a person's probable future...When Stella foresees a gruesome murder, she tells her charming, feckless father about it, but too late. The murder has already been committed and suspicion falls on him. Her mother Jenny, can read other people's dreams, but sometimes misinterprets them, to her own cost. In Unity, Mass., families go back years, and the same prejudices and mistakes are recycled over generations. Hoffman unlocks the caskets of family life and the secret history of a community, in a gripping story about young love and old love, about making choices - usually the wrong ones - about foresight and consequences, all suffused with the haunting scent of phlox and roses, wisteria and peach blossom, and the hum of bees on a summer evening.