Longlisted for the Orange Prize for fiction
published in handback February 2006,
by Fig Tree (Penguin),
and in Penguin paperback in February 2007
at £7.99, ISBN 9780141015026
Leningrad in 1952 is a city recovering from war, where Andrei, a young hospital doctor and Anna, a nursery school teacher, are forging a life together. Summers at the dacha, preparations for the hospital ball, work and the care of sixteen year old Kolya fill their minds. They try hard to avoid coming to the attention of the authorities, but even so their private happiness is precarious.
Stalin is still in power, and the Ministry for State Security has new targets in its sights. When Andrei has to treat the seriously ill child of a senior secret police officer, Volkov, he finds himself and his family caught in an impossible game of life and death - for in a land ruled by whispers and watchfulness, betrayal can come from those closest to you.
A gripping and deeply moving portrait of life in post-war Soviet Russia, "The Betrayal" brilliantly shows the epic struggle of ordinary people to survive in a time of violence and terror.