Gale’s novels always catch one a little short with their flaky situations and obliquely deranged behaviour. .. It is only later – when that slippery charm has conveyed its resilience to everyday brutalities never far away – that his books reveal their grace and beauty… While no less light-footed than its predecessors, The Cat Sanctuary has darker intimations…The tone is gentle rather than militant, as though the crushing masculinity the women have experienced might find some small antidote in the tender mercies of his style.

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