In Memoriam by Alice Winn
Sophie: C, you’ve got to read this new bestselling debut. Put it to the top of your pile. IMMEDIATELY.
Chaya: Consider it done!
3 hours later…
Chaya: Just finished. I hate you. I’m a wreck. It was breathtaking. I couldn’t move whilst reading. I HATE YOU.
She loves me really but you get the idea. This debut is literal magic & hard to sum up. We recommend it wholeheartedly — no, we implore you to read it. This is an important book that brings to life both WW1 for the soldiers & families left behind and the struggle faced by those criminalised for being gay. With a forbidden relationship, classicism & quintessential British humour, this was such an immersive, visceral read, it made us experience the story & felt astonishingly authentic. Read it even if you only read non-fiction or a different genre usually.
Set in 1914, teenagers Henry Gaunt and Sidney Ellwood are best friends at school. They’re very different young men; Gaunt is serious & stoic, Ellwood an artistic dreamer.
When challenging family circumstances lead to Gaunt enlisting to fight in the war, he heads off to the front — too young but he has little choice. It’s hard for him to leave of course — not least because he loves Ellwood. He’s in love with him, in fact. And he doesn’t know that Ellwood feels the same.
And so, Ellwood will follow him into war. As will many of their classmates. Through the battlefields and the trenches, the dead & wounded rack up. It’s unimaginably tough — at times, painful to read but is lifted with the wit & friendships. You will find yourself powering through a story that is completely unputdownable &, amidst the horror of war, at moments genuinely humorous & so incredibly tender.
Please — just read it. Make sure you tune in to our insta chat with the author herself — the supremely talented @alicewinnauthor. You won’t want to miss it ~ S & C