When Jade, a passionate young photographer, is attacked by drug pushers and saved by the brooding shipwright Martin, she becomes increasingly obsessed with her reluctant hero’s tragic back-story. Her pursuit of Martin’s affection and her consequent obsessive search for Martin’s lost sister, Amber, ultimately leads Jade to discover the truth about her own mother, who abandoned her as a baby in the late 1950s, and the tragic events that led to her disappearance.
The inner lives of the main characters, their friends and the forces of sea and storm that confound them, unfold and intertwine over three distinct time periods; 1950s Aldeburgh, late 1970/80s Suffolk, and 1990s London and Essex, where they eventually reunite.
Searching for Amber is an engaging exploration of love, violence, betrayal and loss, told through beautiful writing, natural imagery and poetry. It is a story that takes into its sweep the breathtaking seascapes of Britten’s Suffolk, the rural idyll of Coggeshall and its Martyrs, and the brash vibrancy of Thatcher’s London. In creating this lyrical tale, David Smith has been inspired by Benjamin Britten’s Four Sea Interludes, Graham Greene’s Brighton Rock and Shakespeare’s The Tempest, as well as his memories of romantic weekends spent in Aldeburgh with his wife.