While in Copenhagen, Sara Wheeler, a Toronto journalist, happens upon Cirkus Mirak, a touring Ethiopian children's circus. She later meets and is convinced to drive the circus founder, Raymond Renaud, through the night from Toronto to Montreal. Such chance beginnings lead to later fateful encounters, as renowned novelist Catherine Bush artfully confronts the destructive power of allegations.
With Accusation, Bush again proves herself one of Canada's finest authors as she examines the impossibility inherent in attempting to uncover "the truth." After a friend of Sara's begins work on a documentary about the circus, unsettling charges begin to float to the surface, disturbing tales of sexual and physical abuse at the hands of Raymond. Accounts and anecdotes mount, denunciations fly, and while Sara tries to untangle the narrative knots and determine what to believe, the concept of a singular (truth) becomes slippery. Her present search is simultaneously haunted by her past.
Moving between Canada, Ethiopia, and Australia, Accusation follows a network of lives that intersect with life-altering consequence, painfully revealing that the best of intentions can still lead to disaster, yet from disaster spring seeds of renewal and hope.
: NOW Magazine Book of the Year
: Canada Reads Top 40 Pick
"Catherine Bush is a novelist who gets deep into your head.... Through her novels... Bush has acquired a reputation as a writer's writer. With her new novel Accusation, one hopes she'll get the acclaim she deserves." — Cord Community
"The novel is a pager-turner in a way and a kind of detective story. Unlike most page-turners and much detective fiction, however, Bush's realistic prose narrative is almost totally focused on issues relevant to reader's lives. I recommend it highly." — therecord.com
"Concentric circles spread steadily from the ethical dilemma at the novel's core, growing in depth and implication right up until a perfectly pitched and exquisitely surprising ending. Critical acclaim has never been in short supply for Bush, but there's a sense that Accusation, with a bit of good fortune, could also be her commercial breakthrough. ... Be assured that Accusation is that rare beast: a literary novel with the page-turning properties of the best genre fiction." — Postmedia News
"Accusation is a tale of risk told in an assured and accomplished voice: compelling, unsettling, haunting." — Buried in Print
"A persistent tapping at the complexities of prejudice — the accusations we harbour in our hearts — brings an unnerving friction to Accusation. — The Globe and Mail
"While Accusation by Catherine Bush is a complex read, it is a great book exploring the nature of the human condition in the fast-paced era of ours. It is a book that needs to be read, thought over, and read again to completely understand the nature of our ways." — inkwellbook.blogspot.ca
"[A] powerful reflection on the nature of allegations. ... tense, intimate mystery . . . characters so vivid they captivate from the first page. ... The story is rendered in Bush's elegant prose, delivering lyrical moments that leave an impact. The language is careful, the narration intimate. The writing flows uninterrupted by quotation marks, pulling the reader into the rhythm of Sara's questions, insights and frustrations. Accusation is a story of yearning: the desire to know, and the limitations of that knowledge." — PRISM Magazine
"Bush's gift for crafting an impeccable phrase is more impressive than ever. ... Refusing to put her characters into cardboard compartments, Bush reflects the messy truth of real life. People are complicated blurs of conscience and cowardice. We run toward things as often as we run away from them. We gnash at old hurts even as we throttle forward. And Bush gets that." — Telegraph-Journal
"Be assured that Accusation is that rare beast: a literary novel with the page-turning properties of the best genre fiction. View it from a slightly oblique angle, in fact, and it could almost be a crime novel of the Scandinanvian variety, Henning Mankell or Karen Fossum striding headlong into the murkier reaches of human motivation." — Montreal Gazette
"One of 2013's finest fiction offerings." — Salty Ink
"Concentric circles spread steadily from the ethical dilemma at the novel's core, growing in depth and implication right up until a perfectly pitched and exquisitely surprising ending. Critical acclaim has never been in short supply for Bush, but there's a sense that Accusation, with a bit of good fortune, could also be her commercial breakthrough. ... Be assured that Accusation is that rare beast: a literary novel with the page-turning properties of the best genre fiction." — Calgary Herald
"Bush has put her novelist's finger on something difficult and important." — Susan Swan
Pub date: September 17, 2013