Lucy Honeychurch is an innocent abroad. Under the care of her well-meaning but infuriating chaperon, Cousin Charlotte, she is completing the final part of a conventional well-bred English upbringing: the Grand Tour. But the sensual atmosphere of the Florentine countryside exercises a strange power over Lucy's half-formed and untested character, as do her fellow guests at the Pension Bertolini.
Back home in Surrey, Lucy fights the passions stirred in her by Italy and becomes very respectably engaged to the cultured Cecil Vyse. It promises to be a conventional life until, one day, Florence and all its accompanying emotion resurfaces in the form of young George Emerson. Torn between society's expectations and the stirrings of her quickening heart, Lucy struggles with her dilemma until her warring emotions reach an explosive climax.
E.M. Forster's portrayal of the richness of Italy and the contrasting formality of Victorian England are wonderfully evoked in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation. Sheila Hancock stars.
"This dramatisation of Forster's novel was broadcast on Radio 4 in 1995 and has been resurrected from the archives as the BBC moves to make its material available as digital downloads. The 100 year old story centres on Lucy Honeychurch, a young woman "in need of deliverance" according to a perspicacious vicar, who has her senses stirred in Florence but has to return to Surrey and overcome the conventions of her upbringing before she can follow her heart... This is worth having for Hancock's show-stealing turn as the spinster cousin Charlotte." (
The Sunday Times Audio Book of the Week)
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