It is the summer of 1984, one of the longest and hottest of the 20th century. Unemployment reaches record levels, the nation’s teachers are on strike, police and miners fight running battles, and time in a Devon village is apparently slipping backwards.
Reviewed by Queen Mary’s College Library reading group
This review provoked a lively discussion but the group largely found the novel unsatisfactory. Set in 1984, but it felt as if it was set much longer ago, with a feeling of a pre-war novel. Some of us liked the lyrical quality of the language, and the dreamlike atmosphere against which events were played out, but mostly we were irritated with the magic realism which seemed to infuse everything. It felt as if there were four books competing for attention in the one volume.
Star rating: ****