The Mayfair Bookshop
A Novel of Nancy Mitford and the Pursuit of Happiness
USA Today bestselling author Eliza Knight brings together a brilliant dual-narrative story about Nancy Mitford—one of 1930s London’s hottest socialites, authors, and a member of the scandalous Mitford Sisters—and a modern American desperate for change, connected through time by a little London bookshop.
“An absolute must-read!”—Madeline Martin, New York Times bestselling author The Last Bookshop in London
1938: She was one of the six sparkling Mitford sisters, known for her stinging quips, stylish dress, and bright green eyes. But Nancy Mitford’s seemingly dazzling life was really one of turmoil: with a perpetually unfaithful and broke husband, two Nazi sympathizer sisters, and her hopes of motherhood dashed forever. With war imminent, Nancy finds respite by taking a job at the Heywood Hill Bookshop in Mayfair, hoping to make ends meet, and discovers a new life.
Present Day: When book curator Lucy St. Clair lands a gig working at Heywood Hill she can’t get on the plane fast enough. Not only can she start the healing process from the loss of her mother, it’s a dream come true to set foot in the legendary store. Doubly exciting: she brings with her a first edition of Nancy’s work, one with a somewhat mysterious inscription from the author. Soon, she discovers her life and Nancy’s are intertwined, and it all comes back to the little London bookshop—a place that changes the lives of two women from different eras in the most surprising ways.
Praise For The Mayfair Bookshop: A Novel of Nancy Mitford and the Pursuit of Happiness…
— Madeline Martin, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Bookshop in London
"The force of nature that was Nancy Mitford dazzles in The Mayfair Bookshop, first as one of society's 'bright young things' between the World Wars and then as a wildly successful writer. Both Nancy's razor-sharp wit and hidden heartaches make for riveting reading!"
— Stephanie Marie Thornton, USA Today bestselling author of A Most Clever Girl
"Knight brings vividly to life the war years, the troubling associations of Nancy Mitford's aristocratic family, and the ripple effect of their misdeeds throughout England and beyond. A rich portrait of a fascinating woman, The Mayfair Bookshop hits all the right notes: intrigue, great heart, and hope. Not to be missed!"
— Heather Webb, USA Today bestselling author of The Next Ship Home
"Eliza Knight’s sympathetic and utterly believable portrayal of Nancy Mitford is the icing on this fabulous cake of a novel where present-day romance, a literary mystery, and the lives of England’s most controversial sisters keep the pages turning in this delightful and perfectly constructed story."
— Janie Chang, international bestselling author of The Library of Legends
"Eliza Knight’s The Mayfair Bookshop takes readers into the legendary Nancy Mitford’s head, and more importantly her heart...Twining two timelines together, Knight reminds us that women and books have the power to shape the world, and we have the power to forge our own destinies—even in times of extreme adversity."
— Sophie Perinot, award-winning author of Medici's Daughter
"Channeling Nancy’s verve and quick wit, Eliza Knight’s The Mayfair Bookshop showcases the complex reality behind the glittering Mitford myth, exposing the dark divisions in the breezy pre-war world of the Bright Young Things. Taking readers from country houses to the London Blitz, The Mayfair Bookshop is an homage to Nancy’s timeless truth: that the pursuit of love, in all its forms, is worth fighting for."
— Bryn Turnbull, author of The Woman Before Wallis
William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780063070585, 432pp.
Publication Date: April 12, 2022