One house, five families, four and a half decades, from the 1950s to the present.
In this compelling, engaging and deeply moving novel, the successive occupants of a three-bedroomed terraced house go about the complicated business of keeping themselves and a home together in a place that the rest of the world knows as Belfast, but to them is just 'the town'.
Things happen that might happen anywhere, and things happen that could happen nowhere else, sometimes as noises off, and sometimes on the front doorstep. But whatever happens, they get up the next day, like everyone else, and carry on.
One family moves out, another moves in. Number 5 is about continuity and renewal in the face of life's disruptions. It is about the traces that, sometimes without our knowing, we leave behind.
Birth, death, infidelity, attic conversions: this is the world as most of us see it - from the inside of the house out.