Books by Andrew Miller

Andrew Miller was born in Bristol in 1960 and grew up in Bath and Wiltshire. He has lived in Spain, Japan, Ireland and France, but currently resides in Brighton. He is a graduate of the University of East Anglia's Creative Writing course, and his first no

Released: Sept. 10, 2019

"Miller is in fine form here, mixing an unforgettable cat-and-mouse chase with a moving love story."
A British cavalry officer fleeing traumatic memories seeks solace on a Scottish island, but his new refuge may not be remote enough to let him escape a dangerous enemy. Read full book review >
THE CROSSING by Andrew Miller
Released: Jan. 10, 2017

"In pristine, elegant prose, Miller creates an indelible portrait of a mysterious woman and her tragic quest."
The fantastic voyage of a haunted woman. Read full book review >
THE OPTIMISTS by Andrew Miller
Released: April 1, 2005

"Beautifully written, astutely observed, and as maddeningly inconclusive as life itself. Miller remains a gifted, thoughtful writer in search of stronger plot lines. "
Booker- and Whitbread-shortlisted Miller (Oxygen, 2002, etc.) follows the shell-shocked wanderings of a British photographer haunted by an African massacre. Read full book review >
OXYGEN by Andrew Miller
Released: April 1, 2001

"Consistently interesting, but it doesn't add up to much. Miller does seem more at home in the 18th century."
With compassionate intensity, British author Miller explores the ostensibly entangled lives of four people struggling to slip the bonds of their several obsessions and obligations (and thus "breathe" freely). Read full book review >
CASANOVA IN LOVE by Andrew Miller
Released: Oct. 1, 1998

A richly imagined historical entertainment, capturing both the gaudy, amoral life of mid-18th-century London and the character of one of history's most famous Lotharios. Miller (Ingenious Pain, 1997) clearly has a spacial affinity for the 18th century. Like his previous novel, this one doesn't just catalog the sights and smells of an earlier (exuberant and appetitive) age, but renders in subtle and believable fashion the energies that animated it—energies boldly reflected in the person of Giacomo Casanova, the adventurer, quondam spy, would-be scholar, and infamous rake, who lands in London in 1763, at the age of 38, fleeing various outraged parties and unpleasantries on the Continent. Determined at first to live quietly, Casanova soon finds himself overcome by the old need to be known, and admired. And London, "this bruised honeycomb of a town," would seem a perfect stage on which to play some new part. After all, "these days everyone was reinventing himself." He acquires a manservant, Jarba, a black man who speaks several languages, is discreet, and proves to be coolly competent in a variety of dangerous situations. The danger mostly comes from Casanova's ill-starred pursuit of the beautiful, beguiling, elusive Marie Charpillon. For Casanova, of course, reticence is arousing. But Marie, like everyone else on hand, is not what she seems. What begins as a seduction becomes, for Casanova, an obsession, and his pursuit of Marie throws him in with a robust cross-section of hustling London, from aristocratic bawds and thuggish lords to assassins and even an imperturbable blind judge. Only the multitalented Jarba's efforts save Casanova from destruction. Miller, meanwhile, injects a shrewd reading of Casanova into the action, revealing a man of extraordinary gifts doomed by his own appetites to frustration and melancholy. And he discovers a fitting image of an age enthralled by grand gestures, by the idea of imposture, and by the artistry of living well. Another moving, persuasive and satisfying tale from the most original historical novelist now working. (First printing of 35,000; $50,000ad/promo; author tour) Read full book review >
INGENIOUS PAIN by Andrew Miller
Released: April 1, 1997

Miller's debut, an unusual but uneven cautionary tale cloaked in a historical novel, features a cold-blooded English surgeon, literally a freak of nature, who works wonders in the mid-18th century until being spectacularly undone by his pride. Born of his mother's adultery in the midst of a moonlit midwinter skating party, James Dyer is marked by that icy violation: He utters not a sound and is completely numb to pain, whether his or anyone else's. The first condition lasts only a few years, so that he can speak by the time his family is obliterated by smallpox. He learns to feign pain from a huckster who uses the boy's lack of sensation to sell snake oil medicine to crowds thrilled by seeing James pierced with needles. Rescued from this life by a mysterious, wealthy landowner, James soon discovers that he has become part of his patron's personal collection of freaks, but endures it until he observes an amateurish, lethal operation, sickening to everyone but himself, to separate Siamese twins who were also in the menagerie. He escapes to the Royal Navy, where his aptitude for surgical technique soon has him operating coolly in the heat of battle, then leaves the sea to set up a private practice in Bath. His reputation as a surgeon becomes as huge as his notoriety for coldness and greed. He is shunned in spite of his skills when he drives his wine-addled partner to suicide. Unruffled, James joins a wild race between English physicians to minister to the Empress of Russia, but en route he meets a witch in the woods, whereupon he loses the race but gains the ability to feel—a transformation inducing madness and necessitating a long, excruciatingly painful recovery. Vivid and precise in its isolated scenes, but suffering from a loose, ineffectual narrative. The result is a mere accumulation of arresting incidents rather than the taut, haunting story it could well have been. Read full book review >