From acclaimed author Elizabeth Cooke comes a passionate, richly atmospheric novel set in England and Sicily about two women bound by blood—and the secret that could turn them into strangers
Zeph’s world is blown apart when she finds out that her husband, Nick, has been unfaithful. Devastated by his betrayal, she takes their two-year-old son and leaves. Hoping to find refuge at her mother’s farm, she instead finds a journal she wasn’t meant to see. Now Zeph views her parents and her childhood in a very different light and finds herself questioning everything she once believed about love and marriage.
Alternating between the perspectives of Zeph and her mother, Cora, and filled with breathtaking imagery and insight into the mysteries of romantic attraction, Learning by Heart is a powerful, deeply resonant novel about love, infidelity, passion, family, and literature. It is about the things we give up, the memories that sustain us, and the people we hold in our hearts forever.
Learning by Heart was shortlisted for the UK’s Romantic Novel of the Year award in 2007 in a group of works that the Bookseller praised as “bursting with unique characters, drama, wit and passion.”
Elizabeth Cooke lives in Dorset in southern England and is the author of fourteen novels, many of which she wrote under the pseudonym Elizabeth McGregor, as well as a work of nonfiction, The Damnation of John Donellan: A Mysterious Case of Death and Scandal in Georgian England. Acclaimed for her vivid, emotionally powerful storytelling and rigorous historical accuracy, Cooke has developed an international reputation. She is best known for her novels Rutherford Park and The Ice Child. Her work has been translated into numerous languages.