Swimming to Ithaca - the photos

The family photos that inspired the novel...

In my novel Swimming to Ithaca old family photographs, discovered by Thomas Denham after his mother's death, play a key role. Discovered amongst his mother's possessions after her death, they throw the protagonist back into his memories and into his mother's story. A number of photos are described quite specifically in the novel, and here they are for the curious reader to see. They come from my own family photographs taken on Kodachrome slides by my father. This is not to say that my own family was Thomas Denham's and that Swimming to Ithaca is a roman-à-clef. In particular, Deidre Denham is not a portrait of my own mother. Nevertheless there are these photographs, luminous reminders of people and events that no longer exist. And in some sense Swimming to Ithaca is an attempt to build a kind of truth around them.

Just mouseover the numbered button to see the relevant photo.

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Simon Mawer 2008 - 2022. This website is written and maintained by the author.