Buy Used
£1.96
Used: Very Good | Details
Sold by the book house
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: This item will be picked, packed and shipped by Amazon and is eligible for free delivery within the UK
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Joby (Black Swan) Paperback – 19 Jul 1985


See all 19 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback, 19 Jul 1985
£1,627.99 £0.01
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Black Swan; New edition edition (19 July 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552991767
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552991766
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 12.4 x 0.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,942,066 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

3.1 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 2 Sept. 2007
Format: Hardcover
I can't believe some of the tripe that has been written about this book by other reviewers. When I was 14 I was introduced to this book by a school friend in another class. His class were reading Joby and he raved about. I read a couple of chapters and was so engaged and moved by it that I crept into the English teacher's cupboard and stole a copy. I've loved this book and all Stan Barstow's other work ever since. His novels and short stories might seem part of a disappearing post-war working class world but Joby resonated with me growing up in the 80s. But then again my father was a lorry driver... not an English lecturer, so what would I know.
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J C E Hitchcock on 23 Aug. 2013
Format: Hardcover
Stan Barstow, along with John Braine and Alan Sillitoe, was one of the leading figures in the provincial social-realist movement of the fifties and sixties, and was for a time regarded as a major literary figure. Today, however, he seems less fashionable, probably because the British literary establishment over the last couple of decades has become more metropolitan, more self-consciously intellectual, more concerned with Big Questions than with the everyday lives of Yorkshire draughtsmen or Midlands factory workers. Social realism and provincialism are often seen as old-fashioned.

Despite transient literary fashions, however, Barstow still retains his admirers, of whom I have been one ever since reading "A Kind of Loving" as a teenager. (During my youth in the seventies, this was one of the two books every teenager seemed to have read, the other being Salinger's "The Catcher in the Rye"). The social realist movement, in its heyday, brought a much-needed change to the English literary scene, giving a voice to the working class. The virtues that made Barstow fashionable then- his skill as a storyteller, the strong sense of place in his works, the ability to create well-defined characters- are as relevant today as they were then.

I have to admit, however, that "Joby" is not my favourite among his works. It is set in the summer of 1939, the last weeks of peace before the outbreak of the Second World War. The title character is an eleven-year-old boy from a working-class family in an industrial town in Yorkshire. (There may be an element of autobiography here; Barstow himself would have been eleven years old in 1939). The book is a short one of only about 130 pages, a novella rather than a novel, but the plot is surprisingly complex.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Bacchus TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 9 Sept. 2011
Format: Hardcover
I heard about Stan Barstow's death on 1st August 2011 and remembered that I had an unread copy of this book and decided to give it a go.

I can understand the comments of the critical reviewers but don't agree with them. People often make an assumption that books ABOUT children are written FOR children. I don't think this is a children's book at all; its themes are all too adult.

We have the ominous atmosphere in which people are expecting War. There is plenty of talk about Hitler and his plans and schoolchildren have already been issued with gas masks. The outside world is something Joby is aware of, with Smap's (Joby's friend and confidante) uncle having returned from the Spanish Civil War and a Jewish refugee family having settled locally.

We are also aware of a gradual sexual awakening and a major loss of innocence. This is especially brought home with the incestuous relationship between Joby's father and his cousin.

There is also a question of social aspirations. Although Joby's family is working class, it is a 'respectable' working class that still looks down on the people who live in the Foundry Yard. Joby's mother disapproves of his friends and there seems to be a love of propriety - especially with his aunt.

Younger readers are unlikely to realise the gulf between getting into grammar school and going to the local elementary school in terms of your life expectations. Joby has passed his entrance exam and won a scholarship to grammar school, where he is likely to have an education that will lead him to an academic or professional career. Boys like Snap, who are probably just as bright as Joby, who fail to win a place at grammar school would expect to follow their fathers into the coal mines factories.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Hardcover
Forced to read this at school, and while the process of disecting a book damages the appreciation, all the other books I have come to like or at least understand in later life.
Thiss utter dross in an insult to schools, no plot, no characters, no point. Utter drivel, one of the worst books ever written. A story about nobodys doing nothing. No-one should ever read this, it should not even have been written.
Had we been studying it for "how to make every mistake in writing literature" it would have been a brilliant case study, but otherwise, this is dull, pointless, tedious, with no structure, no plot and no conclusion.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is for all ages. A superb insight into a childhood world with great writing from Stan Barstow. Given it was later adapted for television, this should tell you something about the power of the story - which I'm not about to give away here as it would spoil the joy of this little gem.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


Look for similar items by category


Feedback