2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Social commentary - what Orwell does best!,
This review is from: A Clergyman's Daughter (Paperback)
Written in 1935, two years after the non-fiction "Down and Out in Paris and London", the story draws from personal experience and is obviously the result of meticulous research
NaÔve Rector's daughter Dorothy lives a monotonous life, acting as unpaid curate for her father and getting involved with parish life, trying to... manage on a meagre budget and to ignore the poisonous tongue of gossip Mrs Semprill. She accepts her lot without complaint, but one day she wakes up in London with no recollection of who she is, or how she got there. From here, her life becomes bleak and hard as she struggles to survive, but along the way she meets many people in the same situation by her and there is a certain amount of camaraderie and solidarity between them, meaning that although a lot of the book paints a rather bleak picture, it is also uplifting in places.
The novel is interspersed with comments about education and class that are clearly Orwell's voice/opinion and not really connected to the actual story. Although Orwell disliked this book, I really enjoyed it! I do like his writing about poverty in the 1930s, whether fact or fiction, (I don't know what that says about me!), and I think "Keep the Aspidistra Flying" is of a similar nature so I am looking forward to reading this at some stage.