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Peace Talks Reviews

Peace Talks by Tim Finch

Peace Talks

Tim Finch

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publication date: 16 Apr 2020
ISBN: 9781526611697
  • The ObserverBook of the Day
4 stars out of 5
Aida Edemariam
23 May 2020

"A European arbitrator leading Middle East negotiations grieves for his wife in a low-key but profound novel about human frailty"

For little happening is partly the point. The game and its rules, both spoken and unspoken, are a thin screen. Behind it is the higher-stakes game of feelings, unspoken because it is so hard to name them, or to face them, to make accommodations for or even understand them. Peace Talks turns out to be a moving and direct study of frailty, love and time, and luck and grief, of what is left when all the noise – of machination, violence and competing stories – is stripped away.


4 stars out of 5
Emily Rhodes
9 May 2020

"It’s revealing, in a book ostensibly about ‘talks’, that Finch pays attention to how little of consequence is actually said"

What we are reading in Edvard’s personal peace talk are the words that fill his own silence. Just as he begins a chapter ‘I have nothing to tell you’, Peace Talks is a feat of telling this nothing, of articulating the mundanity and penetrating the emptiness of grief. When the official peace deal is reached, Edvard pauses to wonder how. He notes: ‘Sheer exhaustion played a part. Sheer grinding tedium too.’ So, by the novel’s close, having witnessed the exhaustion and grinding tedium of his grief, masterfully rendered by Finch, we feel Edvard is closer to reaching his own personal peace too.