Main content

Deborah Levy - Swimming Home

Deborah Levy discusses her novel Swimming Home, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2012. Presented by James Naughtie and including a group of invited readers.

Deborah Levy discusses her novel Swimming Home with James Naughtie and a group of readers.

Swimming Home was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2012 and is about a famous British poet on holiday with family and friends on the French Riviera when an unstable young woman, Kitty Finch, turns up out of the blue. At the beginning of the novel she emerges naked from the villa's swimming pool as the group return from a day trip.

From this moment a tangled web of relationships is pulled apart, testing the characters to the limit and exposing all their anxieties and their fears - with the swimming pool at centre stage of the story.

Kitty is obsessed with the poet Joe, and is determined he should read a long poem of her own, also called Swimming Home. Through the novel, she exposes a crack in the marriage of Joe and Isobel his war correspondent wife, watched on by their 14 year old daughter and the neighbour Madeleine.

Presenter : James Naughtie
Interviewed guest : Deborah Levy
Producer : Dymphna Flynn

August's Bookclub choice : Bel Canto by Ann Patchett (2001).

Available now

28 minutes

Credits

Role Contributor
Producer James Naughtie
Interviewed Guest Deborah Levy
Producer Dymphna Flynn

Broadcasts

Bookclub at 20

Bookclub at 20

Sebastian Faulks, Naomi Alderman and more select favourite editions of the programme

Quiz – The Handmaid's Tale

Quiz – The Handmaid's Tale

Twenty questions to test your knowledge of Margaret Atwood's famous novel.

Explore James Naughtie's picks from 200 editions

Explore James Naughtie's picks from 200 editions

A treasure trove of the 20th and 21st Century’s great writers discussing their work

Sample our books and authors Clip Collection

Sample our books and authors Clip Collection

Interviews, previews and reviews

Books website

Books website

Get closer to books with in-depth articles, quizzes and our picks from radio & TV.

Short stories to keep

Short stories to keep

The fiction podcast featuring the best stories from the UK's finest writers

Podcast