Laura McNeal is the author of "Dark Water," a finalist for the National Book Award in Young People’s Literature in 2010, the historical novel, "The Practice House," "The Incident on the Bridge" and four critically-acclaimed novels co-written with her husband, Tom, all of them published by Knopf Books for Young Readers. She holds a master's in fiction writing from Syracuse University and was awarded a 2022 research residency at Baylor University.
In her new book, The Swan's Nest", set in January 1846, struggling poet Robert Browning wrote to famed poet Elizabeth Barrett, chronically ill, expressing his love for both her and her verses. By September 1846, they married in secret (her family disapproved) and headed to the fresh airs of Italy. McNeal, goes adult with this retake on a happy literary couple.
"Let me count the ways I love The Swan's Nest: as a transporting romance, as a meticulous recreation of history, as a compelling examination of social hierarchies, and as an expose of the evil that can lurk behind fortunes. It's a bold feat to enter the minds of geniuses, but Barrett and Browning, as well as the wonderful cast of supporting characters, are as believable as they are beautifully written. Laura McNeal has constructed a gorgeous, faithful, and gripping rendering of poetry's most enduring love story."
-- Nina de Gramont, author of international bestseller The Christie Affair
Awards: PEN Literary Award, California Book Award