Alison Moore

Author of two novels, The Lighthouse and He Wants, and a collection, The Pre-War House and Other Stories.


The Lighthouse

‘A haunting and accomplished novel’
Katy Guest, The Independent on Sunday

'No surprise that this quietly startling novel won column inches when it landed a spot on the Man Booker Prize longlist... Though sparely told, the novel's simple-seeming narrative has the density of a far longer work... It all stokes a sense of ominousness that makes the denouement not a bit less shocking.'
Hephzibah Anderson, The Daily Mail

'It is this accumulation of the quotidian, in prose as tight as Magnus Mills’s, which lends Moore’s book its standout nature, and brings the novel to its ambiguous, thrilling end.'
Philip Womack, The Telegraph

'Ultimately, what drew me into this bleak tale of sorrow and abandonment was the quality of the writing – so taut and economical it even looked different on the page somehow – and so effective in creating a mounting sense of menace and unease.  It never flinches... For such a small volume, The Lighthouse actually has a deceptively clever structure which I didn’t fully appreciate until the ending, and what an ending it is.  I had to think about it, and I like that.'
Isabel Costello, On the Literary Sofa

'This is powerful writing likely to shine in your memory for a long time.'
Emily Cleaver, Litro Magazine

'Alison Moore has created an unsettling, seemingly becalmed but oddly sensual, and entirely excellent novel... a discomforting and moving portrait of intense loss.'
Alan Bowden, Words of Mercury

'Every word feels earned and precise and right.  It all builds wonderfully... It is the quiet exactitude of this novel that makes it such a powerful work'
Ben Dutton, A Literary Life

'a kind of heartbreaking farce... Moore’s touch has the sharp penetration of a hypodermic needle.'
Adam Roberts

'As soon as I had finished it I wanted to re-read it'

'Just superbly written'
Literary Hoarders

'deliciously unsettling... our sense of inevitable disaster becomes almost unbearable'
Jenn Ashworth, The Guardian

'Moore's writing has a superb sense of the weight of memory.'
Kate Saunders, The Times

'Small wonder that it stood up to the crash-testing of a prize jury's reading and rereading. One of the year's 12 best novels? I can believe it.'
Anthony Cummins, The Observer

'It really is an excellent debut'

'precise, evocative prose. The Lighthouse is a fine first novel'
David Hebblethwaite

'beautiful and compelling... Moore's storytelling is masterful'
Nuala Ní Chonchúir, Women Rule Writer

'brilliant craftmanship. A haunting, lingering read.'
Victoria Cooper, Red

'queasy brilliance... It deserves to be read, and reread.'
Isabel Berwick, The Financial Times

'Alison Moore's writing is sublime... The Lighthouse is sad, atmospheric and wonderfully creepy.'
Page Plucker

'Disquieting, deceptive, crafted with a sly and measured expertise, Alison Moore's story could certainly deliver a masterclass in slow-burn storytelling'
Boyd Tonkin, The Independent

The Pre-War House and Other Stories

'showcases the evolution of a writer who refuses to dilute her stories with artificial light or sentimentality to make them more palatable. There’s really no need, when she knows how to make bleakness so thrillingly readable.'
Isabel Costello, On the Literary Sofa

'There is an insistent, rhythmic quality to Moore's writing, and a dark imagination at work.'
Genevieve Fox, The Daily Mail

'just as uncompromising and unsettling as The Lighthouse'
Dinah Birch, The Guardian

'beautifully crafted, rendered in a lean, pared-down style that accentuates the stark content'

'The tales collected in The Pre-War House... pick at psychological scabs in a register both wistful and brutal.'
Anthony Cummins, The Times Literary Supplement

'she creates an atmosphere of discomfort pervaded by that niggling feeling that all is not quite as it should be. Clever stuff.'
Lit Nerd

'A remarkable collection from a remarkable author.'
Johnny Mains

The Pre-War House

'This lingered in the mind long after the first reading. There’s a great sense of place, of sight, scent, and sound. Evocative and sinister, it builds relentlessly to its inevitable unwanted climax. Impressive and memorable.'
Merric Davidson, The New Writer

'The Pre-War House is a controlled and powerful piece of prose fiction.'
Dan Powell

When the Door Closed, It Was Dark

'A terrifically disorienting piece that hits a lot of the same buttons that Shirley Jackson used to... Her economical use of imagery cracks reality in just the right way, with jeweller’s precision... It’s one of the best short stories I’ve read this year.'
Michael Marano, Dead Reckonings

'There’s a palpable sense of menace about this piece... Moore’s tale is excellent.'
David Hebblethwaite

'This story was word-perfect, creepily heavy... It’s a story that needs rereading, which I did, the second I finished it the first time, and again today... I’ve been seething with jealousy over the way Alison Moore puts her words together... I don’t know why uneasy, elliptical stories like this make me happy, but they do. This one did.'
Jenn Ashworth

Small Animals

'Moore writes a pitch perfect tale of gathering unease, the situation moving from strange to distinctly disturbing... This quiet tale of creeping unease and reality shift is a superb example of what the short form is capable of.'
Peter Tennant, Black Static #32

It Has Happened Before

'a complex, unsettling tableau'