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Publication Date
06 February 2014
Available for Sale
Birlinn Limited

The Forever Girl

by Alexander McCall Smith - Find out more about the author

'Smith's writing has charm and wisdom, and Clover's quest for her beloved is gorgeously romantic' – The Times

'[H]is most surprising book yet' – The Times

'Sensitively written with lovely rounded characters, this is an absolute gem' – Lovereading

'[H]is fluency is remarkable, as is his ability to engage the interest and sympathy of the reader [. . .] he is true to one’s experience of life in a way that comparatively few novelists are' – Allan Massie

'convincingly written from a female perspective’ – Yorkshire Post

The Forever Girl is about love, a tough subject at the best of times, tacky at the worst, but the author has a unique way of writing that circumvents both’ – The Sydney Morning Herald

From the author of the best-selling and universally adored No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series – a stand-alone, big-hearted and often heartbreaking novel about unrequited love and the unexpected places it takes us.

At the age of four Clover chooses her own name. Aged six, she falls in love with her best friend, James, with whom she happily spends all her time. But in the adult world, things are not so simple: at the same time that Clover’s mother finds she’s fallen out of love with her husband, she realises that James’s father is interested in her. As the children grow into adulthood, their connection becomes more complicated as well: James drifts away from Clover, but she keeps him in her sights: she attends the same college in Scotland and then follows him to London, Sydney, Singapore, rebuilding her life in every city, hoping each time that James will see what he is missing. As Clover and James, and their parents, navigate their irresistible but baffling mazes of emotion, we are given a beautifully realised tale about how love, even if unrequited, can shape a life.

Alexander McCall Smith is one of the world’s most prolific and most popular authors. For many years he was a professor of Medical Law, then, after the publication of his highly successful No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, which has sold over twenty-five million copies, he devoted his time to the writing of fiction and has seen his various series of books translated into over forty-six languages and become bestsellers throughout the world. These include the 44 Scotland Street novels, first published as a serial novel in The Scotsman, the Isabel Dalhousie novels, the Von Igelfeld series and the Corduroy Mansions novels.