Colin is in many ways an ideal citizen. He holds down a responsible job for the council. He visits his aged mother Nora, shops for her, cooks for her, and listens to her grumbles. He also keeps in touch with his sister Dilys, long estranged from her mother, in a vain attempt to maintain family ties. But neither Dilys, Norah nor Colin's colleagues know about his other - much more secret - life that involves a garden shed, a circus acrobat, a much adored three-year-old charmer, and a certain Mr Haksar's increasingly disquieting penchant for squabbling with his neighbours.What Colin doesn't know is that, thanks to a house insurance policy incorrectly filled in by his mother, his two lives are set to collide, and there is nothing he can do to stop them. With her customary wit and perception, subtle yet razor sharp in her powers of observation, Anne Fine has produced another tour de force. Her portrait of the complex dynamics of family relationships is as lucid as it is uncomfortable, ending with a climax that in its wry irony and sheer unexpectedness is truly shocking.
Anne Fine has now written more than forty books which have been translated into twenty-six languages.Her first was the critically acclaimed The Killjoy. Taking the Devil's Advice and Telling Liddy have both been adapted for the radio. She is also a distinguished writer for young people, and has won the Carnegie Medal twice, the Whitbread Children's Award twice, the Guardian Children's Literature Award and a Smarties Prize. An adaptation of her novel Goggle-Eyes has been shown by the BBC, and Twentieth-Century Fox filmed her novel Madame Doubtfire as Mrs Doubtfire, starring Robin Williams. Her books have been translated into twenty-six languages. Between 2001 and 2003 she was the second Children's Laureate. Anne Fine has two grown-up daughters and lives in County Durham.