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Blue Smoke

December 10, 2020

WILD SWAN Story of Florence Nightingale

by Patti Callahan and performed by Cynthia Erivo 

New York Times bestselling author (Becoming Mrs. Lewis) Patti Callahan celebrates the brilliant and fiery life of one of history’s greatest heroines and the mother of modern nursing: Florence Nightingale.
WILD SWAN introduces listeners to the Lady with the Lamp long before she became a legend. In this poignant story, a young woman has just discovered her divine purpose to become a nurse and struggles to make that dream a reality. While traveling abroad with her close friend, Selina Bracebridge—another strong woman living an unconventional life—a rare opportunity arises for Florence to practice medicine. Intellectually gifted with an advanced education thanks to her father’s progressive political views, can the daughter of a prominent English family defy Victorian societal and familial expectations to fulfill her destiny and her dreams? 
Over the course of a few short years, Florence remains brave and determined in the face of all obstacles, pursuing her passion against her family’s wishes. From her parent’s luxurious countryside estate in England to her travels abroad to the German medical institute where she first began her training and fell in love with her work, we follow Florence during these pivotal early years of her extraordinary life.


Available only from

Audible Originals 

About the Narrator 

Cynthia Erivo.jpg

Cynthia Erivo

Actress. Singer. Songwriter

Cynthia Erivo is a Tony®, Emmy® and Grammy Award-winning actress as well as a SAG, double Golden Globe®, and double Academy Award®-nominee. Erivo burst onto West End and Broadway stages in “The Color Purple” and has since taken the big screen by storm.

Erivo currently stars on the HBO series “The Outsider,” which premiered on January 12, 2020. The series is based on the Stephen King novel of the same name. 

 Erivo recently starred in Kasi Lemmons’ “Harriet”, where she brought the legacy of African American civil rights activist Harriet Tubman to the big screen. The film follows Harriet Tubman as she escapes slavery and goes on to lead the Underground Railroad (2019) and Double Oscar nominee Erivo received Academy Award nominations for (2020) Best Actress and Best Original Song, "Stand Up" from "Harriet". Tony-winner Cynthia Erivo will join the star-studded cast of the upcoming "Chaos Walking" (2021) based on the 2008 novel by Patrick NessRead More.  

About the Heroine  

Florence Nightingale 

Social Reformer. Statistician. Founder of Modern Medicine.

Florence Nightingale, OM, RRC, DStJ was an English social reformer, statistician, and the founder of modern nursing. Nightingale was a trailblazing figure in nursing who greatly affected 19th- and 20th-century policies around proper medical care. She was known for her night rounds to aid the wounded, establishing her image as the 'Lady with the Lamp.'  Nightingale was a prodigious and versatile writer. In her lifetime, much of her published work was concerned with spreading medical knowledge. Read More. 

About the Author  

Patti Callahan 

Author. Podcast Host.

Patti Callahan is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling novelist of fifteen novels, including the historical fiction BECOMING MRS. LEWIS—The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis and host of the podcast collection. In addition, she is the recipient of The Christy Award—-A 2019 Winner "Book of the Year." The Harper Lee Distinguished Writer of the Year for 2020 and the Alabama Library Association Book of the Year for 2019, and the RNA UK finalist for Romantic Historical Fiction. 


Patti is the co-creator and co-host of the weekly web show and podcast Friends and Fiction featuring five bestselling authors.  Her newest novel SURVIVING SAVANNAH will be released on March 9, 2021, by Penguin Random House/Berkley Publishing.


© 2020 by Patti Callahan Henry


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