Everyone Brave is Forgiven

The new Chris Cleave novel is coming in April 2016 in the UK, Ireland, Australia & NZ, and May 2016 in the US and Canada. (Pre-order here.)

War lays siege to our cities. Only love encircles our heart.

9781501124372EUROPE, 1939. When London’s children are evacuated from the hell of the Blitz, 18-year-old Mary North stays behind to teach the students who are too disabled, too disturbed or too racially different to find homes in the conservative countryside. The vivacious Mary defies her aristocratic family, refuses her country’s prejudices, and finds comfort in the arms of Tom Shaw, an honourable, if fainthearted, civil servant. This, she is convinced, is a war England can only win if united. But as the city lurches into chaos, Mary’s principles erode, and her faithfulness to Tom is tested by her growing attraction to his closest friend, the steady Alistair Heath. She must choose which territories of her heart to surrender if she is ever to survive the war.

When Alistair is sent to defend the tiny Mediterranean island of Malta, the Axis forces besiege the little rock with a venom never before seen in modern conflict. Wounded, sick and desperate, only the spark of hope in Mary’s letters keeps Alistair alive. But Tom is his friend, and Alistair is tortured by guilt. When a
dubious lifeline might offer a chance to go home, Alistair must decide which is braver: to die in perfect futility, or to live as an absolute coward.

With tenderness, grace and breathtaking emotional insight, New York Times #1 bestselling author Chris Cleave threads a perfect love story through the vast sweep of a global war. Humorous and heartbreaking, intimate and colossal, this dazzling novel is a victory for the human heart, forcing us to question – and daring us to appreciate – how we live now.


7 thoughts on “Everyone Brave is Forgiven”

  1. I have chosen Little Bee for my book club to read but they are having trouble sourcing it in England. I was given it by my Aunt and have since passed it on to someone else. I LOVED it so much and am really keen for us to read and discuss it. Could you tell me where I can get four copies asap!!!

    Many thanks

    1. Hi Alexandra, with any luck you’ll be able to find LITTLE BEE in any good bookshop in England, where it will appear under its alternative title of THE OTHER HAND. Thank you for your kind words about the novel, and thanks for picking it for your book club. I hope everyone will enjoy it! All best – CC

  2. Dear Chris,

    I am a member of the amazon vine programme and a top reviewer (125 today) with many years of reading and reviewing books behind me. I was offered a copy of Everyone Brave by the vine list and have just finished it. Such a substantial book requires some mulling over in order to do it justice in my review. As I was reading a proof copy I wanted to get in touch before writing. I wonder how much will be altered in the published copy. I realise that for the writing to stay in character throughout 1939 to 1942 required much research and an ear for howlers. The only one I picked up was the use of the word ‘disc’ for what I am sure would have been gramophone record, and the unreality around standing men drinks for stuff when your wallet had apparently just been stolen. (page 175 of my red copy). Also the perhaps intended twice use of the sound of coal being tumbled into the purdonium… Don’t think I am being picky but things do sometimes jump out! Otherwise all is admirable, the way you have brought in Malta lifts the story out of the ordinary and introduces fresh meat what otherwise might look like old boiled ones or should I say tea leaves! It would be great to hear back, Kind Regards, Katharine Kirby (65 brought up in SE London, played on bombsites, knew about peasoupers…)

    1. Hi Katharine,
      Thank you very much indeed for reading Everyone Brave, and for reviewing it. I really appreciate that you’ve taken the time to get in touch, too. I’m glad you didn’t find too many clangers. I did a lot of research, as you correctly intuit, but some anachronisms will always get through. Between me and my various publishers, we picked up a couple of dozen errors in between the proof copy, which is the version you have, and what will be the final text. My greatest embarrassment was my use of the modern Waterloo Bridge in the year before it was actually completed – thankfully, my excellent proof reader picked that up. Thank you very much for flagging “gramophone disc” vs “gramophone record”. I do have some early contemporary references to “disc”, but I will now go back and try to find the point at which the use of “disc” became widespread. If necessary I will go back to the text and fix it. Where I will gratefully agree with you is that Alistair shouldn’t pay for drinks after his wallet is gone – thank you, I will fix that! I’m glad you enjoyed the book and I’m grateful for your very kind & helpful comments. All best – CC

  3. Hi Chris,
    My name is Cindy. I am in the United States. Your book has been on my book shelf for years, but I am not quite sure how I acquired it. I picked it up last week and I just finished it this morning. It was a great read and I shared it on my Facebook page for others to read and enjoy. I love that you have included a reading group guide! I look forward to reading more of your work.


  4. Hi Chris,

    I would just like to say, out of every work I have read by a writer (and I am an English student so I have read an awful lot!), your style and imaginative plots have to be applauded. In my eyes, you’re one of the greats, and a favourite writer of mine. Incendiary still haunts me.


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