Small Pleasures by Clare Chambers


Sevenoaks 2020 Book of the Year


‘If you can bear to have your heart broken, this book is a gloriously beautiful read – with local Kentish scenes, picnics, fruit picking, romance, wonderfully written characters – a really great novel.’


‘Just everything I want in a novel – gripping, sad, happy, quirky and so well imagined.’


My favourite read of 2021 so far,  a wonderfully crafted story with so many elements to tug at your heartstrings, once I started reading I couldn’t put it down!’

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1957, the suburbs of South East London. Jean Swinney is a journalist on a local paper, trapped in a life of duty and disappointment from which there is no likelihood of escape.

When a young woman, Gretchen Tilbury, contacts the paper to claim that her daughter is the result of a virgin birth, it is down to Jean to discover whether she is a miracle or a fraud. As the investigation turns her quiet life inside out, Jean is suddenly given an unexpected chance at friendship, love and – possibly – happiness.  But there will, inevitably, be a price to pay.

‘An almost flawlessly written tale of genuine, grown-up romantic anguish’
The Sunday Times

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