The End We Start From by Megan Hunter

The narrator of Megan Hunter’s moving first novel envisages for herself “a water birth, with whale music, and hypnotism, and perhaps even an orgasm”. The reality is, of course, different and she leaves hospital “barely intact”. The change wrought in her by new motherhood is echoed by a change in the world around her: a flood is threatening to engulf England, making the narrator, her partner and their new baby refugees. The claustrophobia of life with a newborn is intensified by the apocalyptic drama unfolding around them. Retreating to the rural home of her partner’s parents, the narrator refers to the “tiny cabin that has become our world”.