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Publisher's Summary

The Instant Sunday Times Best Seller and BBC Radio 4 Book at Bedtime Pick

From the author of When God Was a Rabbit and Tin Man, Still Life is a big-hearted story of people brought together by love, war, art and the ghost of E.M. Forster. 

1944, in the ruined wine cellar of a Tuscan villa, as bombs fall around them, two strangers meet and share an extraordinary evening.

Ulysses Temper is a young British soldier; Evelyn Skinner is a sexagenarian art historian and possible spy. She has come to Italy to salvage paintings from the wreckage and relive memories of the time she encountered EM Forster and had her heart stolen by an Italian maid in a particular Florentine room with a view.

Evelyn’s talk of truth and beauty plants a seed in Ulysses’ mind that will shape the trajectory of his life - and of those who love him - for the next four decades.

Moving from the Tuscan Hills and piazzas of Florence, to the smog of London’s East End, Still Life is a sweeping, joyful novel about beauty, love, family and fate.

©2021 Sarah Winman (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"Sheer joy." (Graham Norton, author of Home Stretch)

"A bear-hug of a book." (Rachel Joyce, author of Miss Benson’s Beetle)

"Utterly beautiful...filled with hope." (Joanna Cannon, author of Three Things About Elsie)

What listeners say about Still Life

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Wonderful

A beautiful reading of an amazing book
I shall remember these characters for a long time especially Ulysses
I fell a little in love with the kind, gentle, wise and loyal Ulysses and shed a few tears as I became engrossed in the lives of those on these pages
Highly recommend!!

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Captivating

A thoroughly enjoyable book . A little slow to get into but addictive and captivating. Great characters and you could almost be in Florence with them . Sarah Winman is a gifted writer and narrator.

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Meraviglioso! - simply wonderful!

Italy, art, fabulous well-rounded characters that I will continue to think of fondly. Read this, you will fall in love too. beautiful writing and narration, thank you Sarah.

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Achingly beautiful

From the first chapter I did not want this book to ever end. It is full of life, yearning, poetry, love, humour and history. I fell into the lives of the characters and walked the streets with them. It leaves you feeling loved and sad too yet so
Whoever fulfilled

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Sublime

Having just finished this audiobook I am bereft. I miss all the characters and am suddenly desperate to go back to Florence.
Narration was exceptional.

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Bravo. An epic telling.

Creasy’s a character I will miss terribly.
Clever character development. No a thread left unturned.

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Still Life

This is a wonderful story of love, coincidence, happiness and many tears. Wonderful characters bought to life by a fabulous story teller in Sarah Winman.

The narration is well paced and delivered to enhance the personalities of the characters.

This will be a long time favourite and I expect I’ll reread this many times in the future.

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A Glorious Experience

A beautiful story. I have indulged with the full immersion; read & listened. What a fantastic treat to be able to hear the author read her words. Have so thoroughly enjoyed that I have purchased multiple copies for gifts.
About to start again. This book rewards on so many levels. Thank you. Michele

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my favourite book for 2021

Beautifully written and narrated, this is a delightful book. The characters are flawed and profoundly likeable, the backdrop stunning. I finished it and then started it all over again.

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  • V. O'Regan
  • 04-06-2021

A gentle story of love and Florence

A lovely story about love and the beauty of Florence and its ability to stir the passions. A touch of A Room With A View woven in

7 people found this helpful

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  • Helen SJ
  • 15-06-2021

The absolute best book I have read in a long time.

I am very glad I chose the audible version of the book as boy did Sarah Winman know how to play her characters. This book is a must for art lovers, it's filled to the brim with culture and then some! Her characters were just amazing, so incredibly real. This is the first book that I have turned back and started it all over again in a very long time. Sarah you have Marvellous Ways with your penmanship.
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21/06/21
I have just finished this book for a second time. I am so tempted to reread again. I am so invested in the characters I find myself wanting to plea for a follow up!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Patsy Barrow
  • 18-06-2021

Enchanting book

I loved the book . Utter joy,.Florence, beauty, wine, love and friendship. All that matters

4 people found this helpful

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  • Ellen
  • 15-06-2021

Simply awesome

This is a stunner of a book, Everything about it is beautiful. A cast of very different characters who come together to form a family built on love, respect and trust. Books this special are few and far between, a true masterpiece.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Earnest
  • 24-06-2021

Gentle and accomplished memory-telling

Although there may not be the flourishes one might expect from a classic or a great drama, this finely wrought tale envelops the listener into such an engrossing tale. Of course Florence is one of the main characters but all of the people and the parrot will be hard to forget. May I be so bold as to say that this author surpasses the humanity and insight that Forster himself brought to his work. His work is splendid often enough but unlike this novel, too often the people themselves are scarified by his criticism and ‘wit.’ This is a far kinder, well rounded and humane treatment of a troupe of human beings on their way through life. I was very sorry to see them go when the novel finished.

3 people found this helpful

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  • keziah
  • 15-06-2021

Sarah Winnman feeds my soul

A beautifully written story of time and life and love. Rich descriptions of Florence makes you feel like you are there, feeling the warm sun on your skin. Like all her novels the characters become like old friends and you don’t want the story to end because you know you will miss them. I love the way Winnman writes her words make my heart grow a little bigger.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Doreen Barnett
  • 17-06-2021

Deliciously evocative

Perfectly imperfect characters that make you laugh and cry. A richly told story that makes me want to immediately fly to Florence and see it again, but through the eyes of these much loved characters. I will miss them!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Sarah Singleton
  • 15-06-2021

Delightful

Fascinating story superbly told, unexpected twists and turns hold your attention from beginning to end.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amy Leonard
  • 15-06-2021

Beautiful, fun, meaningful….

I have loved this book! And Sarah reading it herself is a real treat! So often author’s reading their own work doesn’t quite work, but this was perfectly performed - accents, character, emotions… spot on! Made it so much more enjoyable. I fell in love with characters and Italy and will definitely revisit this book in the future!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 30-06-2021

lyrical

The most enthralling tale ,vivid descriptions of time , people and place.
I highly recommend.

1 person found this helpful

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