The Road to Grantchester

The Road to Grantchester

3.94 (431 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 2 business days
When will my order arrive?


The captivating prequel to the treasured Grantchester series follows the life, loves and losses of a young Sidney Chambers in post-war London

It is 1938, and eighteen-year-old Sidney Chambers is dancing the quickstep with Amanda Kendall at her brother Robert's birthday party at the Caledonian Club. No one can believe, on this golden evening, that there could ever be another war.

Returning to London seven years later, Sidney has gained a Military Cross, and lost his best friend on the battlefields of Italy. The carefree youth that he and his friends were promised has been blown apart, just like the rest of the world - and Sidney, carrying a terrible, secret guilt, must decide what to do with the rest of his life. But he has heard a call: constant, though quiet, and growing ever more persistent. To the incredulity of his family and the derision of his friends - the irrepressible actor Freddie, and the beautiful, spiky Amanda - Sidney must now negotiate his path to God: the course of which, much like true love, never runs smooth.

The touching, engaging and surprising origin story of the Grantchester Mysteries's beloved Archdeacon, Sidney Chambers, The Road to Grantchester will delight new and old fans alike.
show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 135 x 216 x 34mm | 466g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1408886855
  • 9781408886854
  • 68,270

Review quote

Written with a delicate intelligence ... Sidney Chambers is as convincing as any flesh-and-blood creature, not just an idea of a parson. This is because Runcie has thoroughly imagined him and in this coming-of-age novel he shows us how and why he became what he is -- Allan Massie * Scotsman * Runcie excels at evoking the look and feel of warfare ... Casts the show's first three series in a disturbing but satisfying new light. One can hardly ask for more * Independent * Hugely enjoyable ... Some of the finest writing I have ever read about the sorrow and the pity of war * Herald * A tremendous novel - shrewd, compelling and full of insight - James Runcie elevates the genre to impressive new heights -- William Boyd Written with such tenderness, and very moving - I loved it * Elizabeth Buchan * If you love the TV series Grantchester, don't miss this captivating prequel. It reveals the backstory of how a young Sidney Chambers, carefree in London just before the Second World War, came to be the charming crime-fighting clergyman we know today * Yours * Charming, clever and warm: perfect comfort food for the soul * Joanne Harris * Runcie has the gift of a born storyteller * Daily Mail * Unsparingly, generously truthful -- Jim Crace He is the simple chonicler of English post-ward life, using irony and understatement to lay bare the pathos of ordinary lives * Sunday Telegraph * The clerical milieu is well rendered as an affectionate eye is cast over post-war England - a perfect accompaniment to a sunny afternoon, a hammock and a glass of Pimm's * Guardian * Runcie is emerging as Grantchester's answer to Alexander McCall Smith. The book brings a dollop of Midsomer Murders to the Church of England, together with a literate charm of its own * Spectator * An engaging summer read -- Alexander McCall Smith * Observer * The series has a charming quaintness and deftly turning plot twists * Independent * It takes a first-class writer to put together a convincing storyline for such unlikely circumstances ... We should welcome him to the ranks of classic detectives * Daily Mail * Chambers turns out to be a winning clergyman-sleuth ... There is no denying the winning charm of these artfully fashioned mysteries * Independent * Totally English, beautifully written, perfectly in period and wryly funny. More please! * Country Life * The author writes with warmth and insight about the tricky questions facing individuals in a post-war, godless universe ... Runcie works his magic using a sense of suspense that creates an atmosphere of delicious anticipation * Independent * Runcie has honed his style of light, escapist, small-town crime stories to something approaching perfection * Herald * Runcie has the gift of the born storyteller with an easy style that makes it hard to put the book aside * Daily Mail * No detective since Father Brown has been more engaging than Canon Sidney Chambers. Perfect company in bed -- Salley Vickers Alexander McCall Smith's Mma Ramotswe is going to have to look to her laurels! Sidney Chambers's adventures are thoroughly captivating and engaging -- Amanda Craig, author of Hearts and Minds A perfect accompaniment to a sunny afternoon, a hammock and a glass of Pimm's * Guardian *
show more

About James Runcie

James Runcie is an award-winning film-maker and the author of ten novels that have been translated
into twelve languages, including the six books in the Grantchester Mysteries series. In October 2014, ITV launched Grantchester, a prime-time series starring James Norton as Sidney Chambers, which aired its fourth season in spring 2019. James Runcie is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and Commissioning Editor
for Arts at BBC Radio 4. He lives in London and Edinburgh.
show more

Rating details

431 ratings
3.94 out of 5 stars
5 25% (106)
4 49% (213)
3 23% (98)
2 3% (12)
1 0% (2)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X