What if your first love was your one and only chance of happiness? In our lives, some promises are easily forgotten, while others come to haunt us with tragic results. From the bestselling author of The Girl on the Page comes The Lessons, a compelling novel about love and betrayal.

1961: When teens Daisy and Harry meet, it feels so right they promise to love each other forever, but in 1960s England everything is stacked against them: class, education, expectations. When Daisy is sent by her parents to live with her glamorous, bohemian Aunt Jane, a novelist working on her second book, she is confronted by adult truths and suffers a loss of innocence that flings her far from the one good thing in her life, Harry.

1983: Jane Curtis, now a famous novelist, is at a prestigious book event in New York, being interviewed about her life and work, including a novel about the traumatic coming of age of a young woman. But she won't answer the interviewer's probing questions. What is she trying to hide?

This is a novel about the painful lessons life has to teach us, about ourselves, about love, honesty and morality. Echoing novels such as Persuasion and A Room with a View and the memoir An Education, The Lessons is a striking and powerful story about the loss of innocence and betrayal and how much we can forgive - if we forgive.


ISBN13: 9781460756997
Format: Paperback / softback
Number of Pages: 384
Publication Date: 13 Apr 2022
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers (Australia) Pty Ltd
Publication City, Country: New South Wales, Australia
Dimensions (cm): 23.4(H) x 15.3(L) x 2.7(W)466
Weight (gm): 466

Author Biography

While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Sydney - imaginatively called 'John's Bookshop' - in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written (under a pseudonym) a series of successful novels and, as part of his previous role as Director of Books at Booktopia, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work. John has also appeared at literary festivals and on TV, and been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. His first novel, The Girl on the Page (HarperCollins, 2018), was a bestseller, and a film adaptation is in the works. He now lives in the English countryside with his wife, three dogs, four cats and his overlarge book collection.


The Lessons

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