A profoundly moving story of courage and enduring love, spanning three generations.
Reaching from late 19th-century Cumbria to the present, this elegiac novel celebrates two spirited women: Grace, a farm labourer's daughter who fatefully followed her heart; and Mary, the child she was forced to give up.
According to Mary's son, these two women are unsung heroines. And, as his elderly mother's mind begins to fail, he sets about the task of lovingly recreating their lives and the vanished country of their pasts, linking three generations in a chain of enduring love, loss and courage.
a novel which beautifully conveys how the past is a continuum that constantly feeds our consciousness of the present, altering its current and direction. It is starkly truthful about the perils of ageing. But it is also a convincing testimony to familial love, and its power to prompt the imagination in the service of a more generous understanding....It is a gem. - Independent - Salley Vickers
Melvyn Bragg is a writer and broadcaster. His novels include The Hired Man, for which he won the Time/Life Silver Pen Award, Without a City Wall, winner of the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize, The Soldier's Return, winner of the WHSmith Literary Award, A Son of War and Crossing the Lines, both of which were longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, A Place in England, which was longlisted for the Lost Man Booker Prize, and most recently Grace and Mary. He has also written several works of non-fiction, the most recent being The Book of Books about the King James Bible. He lives in London and Cumbria.