The Tin-Kin (Duckworth, 2009) is Eleanor’s debut novel. It is out now. The book is a fictional story based on photos, artefacts and memories of Eleanor’s mother’s Travelling family. The novel was awarded The Saltire Society First Book of the Year Award in 2009.
Bars on the window split the moonlight intae squares. The sky’s far away. There's cold flagstone on the floor and a dark ceiling that folds in on me. I look for the door, get just a sense ae it, a solid blackness shut tight in the pit ae my stomach...
When her aunt Shirley dies, Dawn finds herself back in her claustrophobic home town in Northern Scotland for the first time in years. A chain of discoveries leads her to a group of Travellers on the outskirts of Elgin. There she learns of a young man left to die on the floor of a cell, and realises that the story of her family is about to be rewritten...
Listen to a podcast about the book with dramatisations here
Listen to Eleanor on BBC Radio Scotland here
Read Eleanor's article for Waterstones Books Quarterly Online here
Plaudits (Download full reviews on Media page)
Thom endows the Travellers of the 1950s (it feels more like the middle ages) with an expressive Scots voice that never slips into mere pastiche. These vagabond ancestors have nobility to spare – but nostalgia is not for sale here. The Independent
Elegantly observed, painstaking, tender and truthful. [Thom's] humanity and precision recall Jessie Kesson at her best. Luring the reader deeper with its gentle, unflinching sense of voice, this is a book that's beautifully realised, hugely rewarding. Janice Galloway
Eleanor is currently writing...