This is a mystery novel about relationships, in particular those between brothers and sisters. When the extremely annoying Anthony Verney, an antique dealer who calls his antiques his beloveds (which reminded me of Golum from Lord of the Rings with his precious) arrives in southern France he sets in a motion an ultimately (depending on how much you care about the characters at the end) tragic event. Audrun and Aramon are a brother and sister whose family have lived for generations at Mas Lunel, whereas Anthony is looking for a house so that he can escape his disillusionment with London life and live near his sister Veronica and her lover Kitty. Unfortunately everyone in the novel is a bit horrible and annoying, not that this should necessarily have affected my enjoyment.
Trespass was a fairly good read but I don’t think it is on a par with other Tremain books such as Restoration or The Colour. In fact didn’t really enjoy her previous novel The Road Home that much and that won the Orange prize. Trespass has an amazing, cliffhanger opening chapter but then it loses its impact for the next few chapters. There are lots of odd bits of french thrown in for effect, the characters are always having a tarte au something or a sirop. All of the characters are deeply disturbed and are either trespassed upon or trespassing. The novel refers to death in Venice, and I felt that there were parallels with Anthony being some creepy old man preying on younger men, in fact I did find the treatment of the gay characters a bit stereotypical. Anthony is absolutely narcissistic and unable to face reality, however there are some scenes where you feel sympathetic towards him such as his waiting to be picked for sports teams as a child, and being left til last. Kitty mentions that everyone has the choice to leave your past behind and be free but few of the characters ultimately achieve this.