'An unknown place.' This was what Michael Frayn's children called the shadowy landscape of the past from which their family had emerged. Shortlisted for the Costa Book Awards, My Father's Fortune sets out to rediscover that lost land before all trace of it finally disappears beyond recall. As Frayn tries to see it through the eyes of his parents and the others who shaped his life, he comes to realise how little he ever knew or understood about them.
This is above all the story of his father, the quick-witted boy from a poor and struggling family, who overcame disadvantages and shouldered many burdens to make a go of his life; who found happiness, had it snatched away from him, and in the end, after many difficulties, perhaps found it again.
Father and son were in some ways incredibly alike, in others ridiculously different; and the journey back down the corridors of time is sometimes comic, sometimes painful, as Michael Frayn comes to see how much he has inherited from his father and makes one or two surprising discoveries along the way.
Michael Frayn is the celebrated author of fifteen plays including Noises Off, Copenhagen and Afterlife. His bestselling novels include Headlong, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Spies, which won the Whitbread Best Novel Award and Skios, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize.