Martin Goodman tells us about his inspiration for On Bended Knees, his novel that went on to be nominated for a Whitbread First Novel Prize, a predecessor of the Costa First Novel Award.

Martin admits that he has a tendency to write the ‘remarkable’. Indeed, On Bended Knees in its early form was a supernatural story about a boy who turned into a rabbit and burrowed beneath the Berlin wall to unite both sides. He received feedback that these remarkable aspects needed to be turned down for him to be published, so he rewrote the book without the supernatural element.

The boy would bring Berlin together without a transformation.

And so On Bended Knees became a thoughtful, subtle exploration of generational guilt and the legacy of WW2. It’s a novel that’s been praised for it’s simplicity, charm and nuance. Beyond this project, Martin did not abandon ‘remarkable writing’. In his portfolio,  you’ll find dystopian horrors, vampire stories and thrillers.

The Second World War is over, but young Tomas learns that Europe’s wounds have not yet healed. Learn more about On Bended Knees here and grab a copy here.