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Shelf Life


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A refreshing, heart-wrenching, innovative debut about a young woman rebuilding herself after her partner abandons her, leaving behind only their shared shopping list for the upcoming week.

About the Author

Livia Franchini is a writer and translator from Tuscany, Italy, whose short stories have been published in numerous anthologies. Livia is also an inaugural writer-in-residence for the Connecting Emerging Literary Artist project. She lives in London and is completing a PhD in experimental women's writing at Goldsmiths University.


Shelf Life is whip-smart, slyly heartbreaking, and I felt the truth of it in my bones. Franchini dissects ideas of love, dating and identity in a way that feels both ruthless and humane. I loved it. * Sophie Mackintosh, author of 'The Water Cure' *
This is a beautiful novel. The scene with the mother and the chicken is one of the most rigorous, affecting, strange scenes I have read in a while and it's still haunting me. It was funny, and sad, and I devoured it. It reminded me of Convenience Store Woman. I absolutely loved it. * Susannah Dickey, author of 'Tennis Lessons' *
Livia Franchini has delivered an impressive, Sally Rooney-esque debut novel. * New Statesman *
Shelf Life is so intimate. It's like riding the bus home with a friend as she confides her secret hopes and fears. Each raw emotion is carefully delivered. Franchini has created a protagonist who feels achingly real. I wanted to cancel all my plans and just read this book. * Rowan Hisayo Buchanan, author of 'Harmless Like You' *
Shelf Life feels like a Bridget Jones for cynical souls. Franchini captures perfectly the mundane devastation of heartbreak and the utter impossibility of knowing and being known. Sweet, funny, odd and achingly perceptive, this seemingly small tale asks some terrifyingly big questions about love, loss, identity and existence. I couldn't put it down. * Natasha Bell, author of 'His Perfect Wife' *

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