Educated at Millfield School in Somerset and at Brasenose College, Oxford, I took a degree in biology and worked as a biology teacher for many years. My first novel, Chimera, was published by Hamish Hamilton in 1989, winning the McKitterick Prize for first novels. Mendel's Dwarf (1997), reached the last ten of the Booker Prize and was a New York Times "Book to Remember" for 1998. The Gospel of Judas, The Fall (winner of the 2003 Boardman Tasker Prize for Mountain Literature) and Swimming to Ithaca followed. In 2009 The Glass Room, my tenth book and eighth novel was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. My 2012 book The Girl Who Fell From The Sky and its sequel Tightrope (2015) both feature the female Special Operations Executive agent Marian Sutro. Tightrope won the 2016 Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction. In 2018, my eleventh novel, Prague Spring, signalled a return to a Czech setting following both Mendel's Dwarf and The Glass Room; in 2022 my latest novel ANCESTRY, an exploration of fiction and personal history, will be published in both the UK and the US. I am married, with two children and four grandchildren. My wife and I have lived in Italy for over forty years but now split our time between our home near Rome and a house in England.Read more Read less
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