Top positive review
1 of 1 people found this helpful
A slice of life from Blair's reinvented England
on 13 September 2013
This is a very good novel but not a great novel, although, two weeks after finishing reading it aspects of the story have stayed with me. The connections between the parallel characters and their relationships is both credible and fits in with the time sequence. I liked the eighteen month progression between segments which required joining the threads of what might have occurred in-between. Although there are similarities to some other recent English novels (In the Kitchen-Monica Ali, The Finkler Question-Howard Jacobson, The Northern Clemency-Philip Henscher to name a few and one about a city stock broker This Bleeding City-Alex Preston that my review of on Amazon appears to have dissapeared) about the comfortably well off and/or employed living post Thatcher, Blake Morrison carries the life and story of his characters with compassion, wit, insight, warmth and some kernel of hope and still reveals the flaws that make people of all persuasions ordinary, engaging, interesting. Woven through the story is the image of the fox. It works, sometimes mythologised at least it adds to the narrative rather than dominating it or undermining it. I read it on the train to work, 30 minute bursts and it is easy to pick up and put down. And the Blair era? Although the politics barely seep through, the post modernist, selfish society's breath is all over the lives of the protagonists. Recommended.