The Sweet Dove Died

Barbara Pym

04 January 2024
224 pages


‘Barbara Pym is one of my most favourite novelists. Few other writers have given me more laughter and more pleasure’ Jilly Cooper

Between the amorous antique dealer Humphrey and his good-looking nephew James glides the magnificent Leonora, delicate as porcelain, cool as ice. Can she keep James in her thrall? Or will he be taken from her by a lover, like Phoebe . . . or Ned, the wicked American?

‘I'm a huge fan of Barbara Pym’ Richard Osman

‘Faultless’ The Guardian

‘Her characters are all meticulously impaled on the delicate pins of a wit that is as scrupulous as it is deadly’ The Observer

‘A coldly funny book’ The Sunday Telegraph

‘Highly distinctive . . . The critics who have recently insisted on Miss Pym’s too long neglected gifts have not been wrong’ Financial Times

The most underrated novelist of the century . . . The subtlest of her books — the sparkle on first acquaintance has been succeeded by the deeper brilliance of established art
[Pym] makes me smile, laugh out loud, consider my own foibles and fantasies and, above all, suffer real regret when I reach the final page. Of how many authors can you honestly say that?
A splendid, humorous writer