Angels of Destruction

Keith Donohue
Jonathan Cape

There is little wonder Donohue’s new work has drawn comparisons to Audrey Niffeneggers’ publishing sen­sation, The Time Travellers Wife. Donohue has the same mastery of the time-space continuum, with a narrative arc that seamlessly spans three decades in a heart-wrenching exploration of the human condition.

Margaret Quinn is a lonely widow haunted by the loss of her only child Erica, who as a teenage runaway joined the hard-line activist cult, “Angels of Destruction.” With only her memories for company, Margaret is awoken one night by an unexpected visitor, a 9-year-old girl who seemingly appears from nowhere, with nothing to identify her except a battered suitcase and a nametag, “Nora”. Almost instantly, Margaret decides to try and pass Nora off as her daughter’s child – desperately grasping at the comfort her fictitious granddaughter offers.

Demonstrating supernatural manifestations, Nora inspires both devotion and fear in those who encounter her. Donohue’s powerful characterisation ensures Angels of Destruction remains an infinitely believable, potent investigation into the nature of human faith, hope and love.

Samantha Cracknell