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The Enchanted April

By Elizabeth von Arnim and Brenda Bowen
The Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim and Brenda Bowen digital book - Fable

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Publisher Description

The charming, slyly comic novel of romantic longing and transformation that inspired the Oscar-nominated film
Four very different women, looking to escape dreary London for the sunshine of Italy, take up an offer advertised in the Times for a “small medieval Italian Castle on the shores of the Mediterranean to be let furnished for the month of April.” As each blossoms in the warmth of the Italian spring, quite unexpected changes occur.

An immediate bestseller upon its first publication, in 1922, The Enchanted April set off a craze for tourism to the Italian Riviera that continues today. Published here to coincide with a contemporary retelling, Enchanted August by Brenda Bowen, it’s a witty ensemble piece and the perfect romantic rediscovery for fans of Jess Walter’s Beautiful Ruins and Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love as well as of Downton Abbey and the hit movie The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,500 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

4 Reviews

Slightly Smiling Face
Characters change and grow
“Vivid and enchanting, it was a lovely story with some great characters. I’d never heard of this one before but it was a part of a book club for April and it seemed perfect for a month of the same name. It was really enjoyable from start to finish and had a steady flow that kept you reading (or listening in my case. My audiobook copy was great) and I enjoyed it so much more than I thought I would. I think upon a second read it would be a 5 star, as I’d also love to have the book as a physical copy. I’ll probably reread it again next April! It was great getting to know all of these ladies, who escape to an old medieval castle in Italy and find much more than they were expecting there. The writing style I adored and it was so easy, I finished it in a few days! I’m intrigued to venture into more from this author now after reading this one.”
“I really wanted to love this one. I didn't dislike it, but it wasn't something that I couldn't put down. I was not drawn to the characters especially. Just meh.”

About Elizabeth von Arnim

Elizabeth von Arnim (1866–1941), a cousin of the writer Katharine Mansfield and a lover of H. G. Wells, wrote more than twenty books. Born in Australia, she spent most of her childhood in England and lived also in Germany, Switzerland, and France. She moved to the United States at the start of World War II and died in Charleston, South Carolina.

Brenda Bowen (introducer) is the author of the novel Enchanted August, a contemporary reimagining of The Enchanted April set in Maine. A former children’s book publisher, and now a literary agent, she has written more than forty books under the name Margaret McNamara. She lives in New York.

Brenda Bowen

Other books by Brenda Bowen

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