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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite Novel
In The Generation Game Sophie Duffy creates characters so real that long after I finished reading I could imagine them, in Devon, going about their lives. This beautiful and skillfully written novel takes us on the journey of Phillipa's life, her heartaches, her courage and her triumphs. The seemingly ordinary people around her do extraordinary things, their hearts and...
Published 23 months ago by Liz Ringrose

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good romantic story
The story was good, but I didn't like the style of writing. It jumps about from the present day to previous decades all the way through the book. It is the life story of a woman from birth to motherhood, with one or two surprises on the way and a lovely twist near the end.
Published 6 months ago by Reading lover


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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite Novel, 1 Jan 2013
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In The Generation Game Sophie Duffy creates characters so real that long after I finished reading I could imagine them, in Devon, going about their lives. This beautiful and skillfully written novel takes us on the journey of Phillipa's life, her heartaches, her courage and her triumphs. The seemingly ordinary people around her do extraordinary things, their hearts and lives entwined forever with hers. This writer achieves that difficult nack of combining comedy and sorrow without either one becoming dominant or contrived. The title is perfect and those who remember the television game show of the same name will find memories resurfacing. I wholeheartedly recommend this novel to anyone who loves a thoroughly good story and characters to fall in love with.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Play the Generation Game., 20 July 2014
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Janet Gogerty (Southbourne-on-Sea) - See all my reviews
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I bought this on Kindle soon after it was recommended and was not disappointed. Structured to follow two time lines tied in with real events and British television programmes. I especially enjoyed the child's eye view of events,subtly changing as she understands the adult world more. Complex strands gradually weave together and the two time lines merge. An amusing and satisfying read.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Secrets and Lies, 16 Aug 2011
This review is from: The Generation Game (Paperback)
This is an astonishingly assured and intricately plotted novel from a debut author. It held me in its narrative grip from the first page to the last, as the heroine Philippa unravelled the mysteries of her past and worked out what (and who) she wanted in life.

The author's style is engaging and wryly funny, making me laugh out loud one minute, but later moving me to tears. It's not easy to write about the death of a child (is it, Charles Dickens?) without sounding sentimental or maudlin, but Sophie Duffy manages to do this in some genuinely moving and heart-rending scenes. I'll never look at an old tin box in quite the same way again.

If you loved One Day by David Nicholls, you'll also love this book, because both authors tell the truth about the tragi-comedy of love and life. A five star debut - am really looking forward to seeing what this author does next!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, 20 Jan 2013
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This review is from: The Generation Game (Paperback)
I loved this book, it grabbed you from the very first page, an original story line and very well written.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars couldn't put it down..., 15 Dec 2014
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I totally loved this book! From beginning to end I couldn't wait to pick it up and carry on reading it. I really identified with the characters and loved the way in which the story switched from current day to the narrators childhood. It read like a true biography and mentioned & reminded me of so many aspects of life in the 70's, 80's & 90's and brought back lots of fond memories. I felt so connected with Phillipa ( the narrator) even though it is a far cry from my own upbringing and all the characters were so real to me. A light read which really flowed..I loved the tone, humour and fluidity of the writing. ..I have just downloaded her next book The Holey Life.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Walk Down Memory Lane, 21 Sep 2013
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At the start of The Generation Game, it is 2006 and the central character Philippa has just given birth to her first child. We do not know whether Philippa is married, who the baby's father is or whether they are still together. We do know, gradually, that the baby is unwell and as Philippa waits to find out whether her child will survive, she tells her own story in flashbacks.

We hear of her birth in a London hospital, to Helena, an unmarried mother who tries her best but is overwhelmed by having to take responsibility for another's life. We see Helena flee with Philippa to Torquay and later, alone, to Canada. Philippa grows up with a variety of friends, some of whom she loses forever while some she loses and then finds again. There is Bob, who becomes her de facto guardian after Helena leaves. There is Lucas, the little boy who is her best friend even when he is no longer with her. There is the wonderful Wink, with her parrot, her front room that stinks of bird pee, and her addiction to Bruce Forsyth and the eponymous game show which was a part of so many people's Saturday evenings. And there is Terry or TJ as he prefers to be called, who is always around in the background - and sometimes in the foreground as well.

I loved this book from the first page to the final word. Starting back in1965, it will strike a chord with readers who remember the sort of childhood that was common in the 1950s and 1960s: children present and observing but not fully understanding the goings-on of the adult world. There are some great cultural references: taking Blue Nun to dinner parties in the early 1970s; street parties for the Queen's silver jubilee; that kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace when Charles married Diana. Each of the flashback chapters is headed with the name of a television programme from the era: This is Your Life; New Faces; Gladiators and so on. While these do not necessarily relate to the content of the chapter, they are additional links back to the period in question.

The Generation Game won Sophie Duffy both the Luke Bitmead Bursary and the Yeovil Literary Prize. It's not difficult to understand why.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Uniquely likeable and quite quirky .., 30 Aug 2012
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It has a very slight feel of Hideous Kinky We follow the life of Philippa Smith, supported by a whole host of others sprinkled through this well crafted debut novel, which rings true on growing up on a diet of BBC family television in the 1970s - right down to a Blue Peter time capsule.. Sophie Duffy is to be commended: Philippa's narrative voice talking to her new born daughter and the roles of people in her life and their continuing relationships are beautifully captured. Don't overlook a single detail, they build throughout the novel which is sad, funny, complex and ultimately a great read. Definitely a writer to look out for.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Generation Game, 13 Aug 2011
This review is from: The Generation Game (Paperback)
You would never suspect that this was a first novel. From the outset the author seizes the reader with an assured touch. I was gripped from a few pages in and read the book at a single sitting. Washing and childcare were both forgotten. The narrative voice is easy and attractive and draws the reader in with a light but insistently humorous and dry touch. The plot line is essentially one of complex family relationships and growing up in the 1970s. Yet never is there sentimentality or laziness of feeling. Difficult themes such as death, loss, conflict, lack of belonging, secrets and lies are all broached with confidence and a warmth which smiles wryly at pain without brushing it aside.

Many novels as easy to read and enjoyable as this are soon forgotten. Not "The Generation Game". Although our copy has been passed around the family and is now covered in suntan oil, the tale itself has a mythic and timeless quality making it lodge in the memory. I could retell the whole story now, but I won't because then you would not have the pleasure of reading the book itself! Buy, read and enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really good story., 5 Nov 2014
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A very enjoyable read - a bit different. Although I was born in the 50s I loved all the references to the TV programmes of the 70s. I liked the characters and the way the story was written. I didn't guess the ending but was very satisfied with the outcome of the plot. I will definitely look out for more books by Sophie Duffy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyable read, 11 Jun 2014
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Believable characters in a topsy turvy world. Phillippa is left with an"uncle"when her mother runs off to Canada. Through all her trials and tribulations she makes her mark in the family and we end up with a Happy ever after story. Thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend.
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The Generation Game
The Generation Game by Sophie Duffy (Paperback - 1 Aug 2011)
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