The Story of the Forest


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About the Author

Linda Grant is author of four non-fiction books and eight novels. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, she won the Orange Prize for Fiction in 2000, the Lettre Ulysses Prize for Literary Reportage in 2006 and holds honorary doctorates from the University of York and Liverpool John Moores University. The Clothes on Their Backs was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2008 and went on to win the South Bank Show Award; The Dark Circle was shortlisted for the 2017 Women's Prize for Fiction; A Stranger City won the 2000 Wingate Literary Prize. Linda Grant lives in London.


What an amazing epic, fascinating and moving story. The sections set in Liverpool really spoke to me having grown up there, but I loved the London chapters. Vivid storytelling with complex and colourful characters. I thought it was spectacular.
*David Morrissey*

Epic, magnificent, beautiful. A perfect work of art and craft and such a good story... I felt I was living it. I couldn't put it down.
*Philippa Perry*

I'm not sure it could ever be possible to do justice to this magnificent novel in a few words: the flawless writing, wonderfully flawed characters, its epic sweep combined with a warm immediacy, indeed every page of it just bowled me over completely. I'm in awe, I'm charmed, and I want to press a copy on everyone I know.
*Nigella Lawson*

A major achievement... as fine as anything Linda Grant has written... maybe excelling them all
*Joan Bakewell*

Such an intelligent family saga, ambitious and moving and funny too... I loved it
*Tessa Hadley*

Epic and marvellously entertaining... Grant is a brilliant chronicler of the British-Jewish diaspora, as well as being a close observer of cities... The Story of the Forest hums with the boisterousness of family and community life... There's a furious energy to the novel, which constantly moves forward even as it looks sorrowfully back
*Financial Times*

The tale is told with humour and sensitivity... Grant's own Eastern European roots in a culture with few written records and a strong tradition of storytelling informs the narrative

Like all good stories, it teems with false starts, mysterious clues and dead ends... Grant's particular gift is for the arresting scene that blends menace with comedy

Jewel-like clarity... exceptional
*Reverend Richard Coles*

An epic story of a young woman coming of age in the early 20th century, set against the backdrop of the tumultuous events happening in Europe at the time. It's such a joy to be in the hands of an assured, vivid storyteller like Grant
*Good Housekeeping*

[A] smartly compressed dynastic novel... Grant's exquisite writing shows us the Latvian immigrants who adapted to Liverpool, then London, as well as offering grainy glimpses of those who stayed in Riga, reviewing the whole saga in a triumphant, elegant ending with never a word of schmaltz
*Mail on Sunday*

[A] wise, sad and sometimes humorous family saga... Grant explores how families build their identity on stories and myths that mutate in the telling. It is fascinating to observe one family's changing domestic experiences and expectations in the 20th century, felt more keenly as their relatives back in the east experiences the horrors of war and dictatorship
*The Times*

Tracing the arc of Mina's life over the full span of the 20th century, The Story of the Forest defies expectation. It is a sprawling family epic elegantly contained... a story of Jewish assimilation from the margins of Jewish history... sharp observation tempered with humour and tenderness... the characters themselves spring from these pages, vividly, unforgettably alive

I devoured The Story of the Forest, an engrossing family saga that spans Latvia to Liverpool and the best part of a century... a truly terrific book - with a beautiful cover
*Financial Times*

Grant makes her characters talk from the heart, as does Anna Cordell's versatile and haunting narration - Audiobook of the Week
*The Times*

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