Nicholson is an acclaimed British novelist, television writer, and playwright, but he is best known as the Oscar-nominated screenwriter of Gladiator and Shadowlands. He is currently enjoying success in movie theaters with his adaptation of the hit musical Les Misérables. His latest novel is a sweeping historical epic built around a love triangle that blossoms (and occasionally wilts) against the backdrop of pre- and post-WWII. A modern-day framing device, involving a young woman meeting her enchanting grandmother for the first time, is cinematic without relying on clichéd bombast to draw readers into the enjoyably familiar yet very well-written story. Go big or go home is Nicholson’s forte, and he won’t disappoint fans of classic Hollywood-style storytelling that grapples with life’s big-ticket issues (Faith! Duty! Honor!). The book’s marketing tagline (sometimes heroes don’t make the best husbands) practically guarantees a future film version. Yet, it’s the book’s quieter moments, infused with realistic dialogue and fastidious attention to historical detail, that will make true romantics swoon and should win over a wide mainstream audience. --Chris Keech
“A terrific book with a wonderful understanding of life in pre-war and post-war Britain. The description of the abortive Dieppe landings are extraordinary. The post-war lives of those who survived are particularly well drawn, the characters rich and varied. And there are always surprises. It reminds me of the first time I read Brideshead Revisited. A total triumph.”
(Julia Gregson author of East of the Sun and Jasmine Nights
"Nicholson’s great strength lies in his ability to make the reader understand and care about his characters; he loves them and we get to love them too. He is particularly concerned with morality and love, subjects that have inspired all great novelists. It is a joy to find a contemporary writer passionately engaged with both. This is a novel worth reading more than once."
(Elizabeth Jane Howard author of the Cazalet Chronicle
"A wartime love story in the tradition of Atonement...affecting."
"A sweeping historical epic...won't disappoint fans of classic Hollywood-style storytelling that grapples with life's big-ticket issues...infused with realistic dialogue and fastidious attention to historical detail... will make true romantics swoon."
"Nicholson pays careful attention to historical details. He develops central characters that stir our emotions and keep us engaged...."
(Library Journal, starred review
“Depictions of postwar France, pre-independence India, and battlefield chaos add scope to Nicholson’s ruminations on love, faith, decency, the choices ordinary people make, and how they cope with the consequences.”
(The Daily Mail
“Nicholson manages not to write a single clichéd sentence…extremely powerful.”
"Masterful, engaging and romantic...his forte is in describing the nuances and complications of relationships and this talent really shines in Motherland. His simple, intense style...is one to get lost in."
"A profound and moving novel; tender and compassionate...there is always, in Nicholson and his characters, however desperate and lost, the small fierce spark of humanity. His great triumph is in creating a love triangle in which we, as much as the characters themselves, can see no resolution, because it is unbearable to imagine any of them hurt."
(Clare Clark The Guardian