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1914, a long hot summer. THE LAST SUMMER is a sweepingly epic and gloriously intimate commercial debut – a beautiful and haunting story of lost innocence and a powerful, enduring love.

Clarissa is almost seventeen when the spell of her childhood is broken. It is 1914, the beginning of a blissful, golden summer – and the end of an era. Deyning Park is in its heyday, the large country house filled with the laughter and excitement of privileged youth preparing for a weekend party. When Clarissa meets Tom Cuthbert, home from university and staying with his mother, the housekeeper, she is dazzled. Tom is handsome and enigmatic; he is also an outsider. Ambitious, clever, his sights set on a career in law, Tom is an acute observer, and a man who knows what he wants. For now, that is Clarissa.

As Tom and Clarissa’s friendship deepens, the wider landscape of political life around them is changing, and another story unfolds: they are not the only people in love. Soon the world – and all that they know – is rocked by a war that changes their lives for ever.


'An enchanting story of love and war, and the years beyond'
Penny Vincenzi
'Don't miss THE LAST SUMMER by Judith Kinghorn. [An] epic and enthralling love story set against the backdrop of the Great War'
Fanny Blake, <i>Woman and Home</i>
'The year is 1914 and love and war are about to transform privileged 16 year old Clarissa's charmed existence forever. This sumptuous romance is made for fans of Downton'
<i>The Lady</i>
A sumptuous, absorbing tale of love in time of war. Judith Kinghorn's novel brilliantly illuminates the experiences of a generation of blighted youth
Rachel Hore
'[An] enchanting debut of Rachel Hore/Downton Abbey ilk, big storytelling stuff of social and political change spanning the First World War and beyond. It's a glorious read, highly recommended'
Sarah Broadhurst, <i>Bookseller</i>
'Judith Kinghorn has beautifully captured the thoughts and feelings of a particular group in a lost generation. From an historical perspective, Kinghorn has clearly done her research which is illustrated in the small details that capture the war and post-war periods, making The Last Summer entirely believable and often shocking... Despite the themes of loss, grief and change, The Last Summer is above all a wonderful and heartbreaking love story... Highly recommended!'
<i>One More Page</i> blog
'Impeccably written and well researched this is an atmospheric and haunting read. It takes the reader from languorous summer days by the lake on a country estate to the horror of the trenches with equal aplomb... Judith Kinghorn skilfully navigates our journey through love and loss... This is the perfect balance of romance and grit by a great new writer. Don't miss it!'
<i>The Riddle of Writing</i> blog
This is a beautifully written and researched book. The imagery of the period as well as the characters remain with the reader after the last page has been turned. Almost elegiac in the way that it conjures up a lost time and an enduring love
Lorna Gibb, author of <i>West's World: The Life and Times of Rebecca West</i>