The dazzling new novel from the author of Cloud Atlas, at once the kaleidoscopic story of an unusual woman's life, a metaphysical thriller and a profound meditation on mortality and survival. Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2014 Run away, one drowsy summer's afternoon, with Holly Sykes: wayward teenager, broken-hearted rebel and unwitting pawn in a titanic, hidden conflict. Over six decades, the consequences of a moment's impulse unfold, drawing an ordinary woman into a world far beyond her imagining. And as life in the near future turns perilous, the pledge she made to a stranger may become the key to her family's survival . . . In 1984, teenager Holly Sykes runs away from home - a Gravesend pub. Sixty years later, she is to be found in the far west of Ireland, raising a granddaughter as the world's climate collapses. In between, Holly is encountered as a barmaid in a Swiss resort by an undergraduate sociopath in 1991; has a child with a foreign correspondent covering the Iraq War in 2003; and, widowed, becomes the confidante of a self-obsessed author of fading powers and reputation during the present decade. Yet these changing personae are only part of the story, as Holly's life is repeatedly intersected by a slow-motion war between a cult of predatory soul-decanters and a band of vigilantes led by one Doctor Marinus. Holly begins as an unwitting pawn in this war - but may prove to be its decisive weapon. The arc of a life, a social seismograph, a fantasy of shadows and an inquiry into aging, mortality and survival, THE BONE CLOCKS could only have been written by David Mitchell.