Released on 06 October 2006.

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Winter in Madrid

3.79 based on 9109 ratings & 895 reviews on


From the bestselling author of the Shardlake series, C. J. Sansom, comes Winter in Madrid, a standalone historical novel set in the aftermath of the Spanish Civil War.

1940: The Spanish Civil War is over, and Madrid lies ruined, its people starving, while the Germans continue their relentless march through Europe. Britain now stands alone while General Franco considers whether to abandon neutrality and enter the war.

Into this uncertain world comes Harry Brett: a traumatised veteran of Dunkirk turned reluctant spy for the British Secret Service. Sent to gain the confidence of old schoolfriend Sandy Forsyth, now a shady Madrid businessman, Harry finds himself involved in a dangerous game - and surrounded by memories. Meanwhile Sandy's girlfriend, ex-Red Cross nurse Barbara Clare, is engaged on a secret mission of her own - to find her former lover Bernie Piper, a passionate Communist in the International Brigades, who vanished on the bloody battlefields of the Jarama.

In a vivid and haunting depiction of wartime Spain, Winter in Madrid by C.J. Sansom is an intimate and compelling tale which offers a remarkable sense of history unfolding, and the profound impact of impossible choices.

'Sansom adroitly draws the disparate strands of his ambitious saga together. His non-pareil evocations of time and place anchor his characters with satisfying precision' Independent

In the media

A remarkable achievement
Times Literary Supplement
Sansom's action-packed thriller is a classic tale
Daily Mail
An unsentimental and utterly fascinating portrait of Spain in 1940 . . . Sansom wears his research lightly and gets right under the skin of his characters. The result is a tense, literate page-turner, full of twists, authentic detail and real pathos, a superb achievement