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Jubilee Hardcover – 29 Dec 2011

3.9 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: W&N (29 Dec. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0297864580
  • ISBN-13: 978-0297864585
  • Product Dimensions: 13.4 x 3 x 21.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,152,726 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

This is an exceptional, arresting novel which, by shifting skilfully from past to present with ever-increasing tension, highlights the traumatic effects of racism experienced in childhood, and addiction to prescription drugs in the medical profession... The book penetrates beyond the familiar arguments of political correctness to a darker world that needs to be drawn to the light. It makes you aware of how much things have changed in Britain since the last Jubilee, and how far we have travelled in our pursuit of a greater tolerance. (Clare Morrall, author of Astonishing Splashes of Colour and The Man Who Disappeared)

Jubilee is an assured debut by a writer of great promise. It's a sharply-written account of the birth pangs of multicultural Britain (Marcel Theroux)

The South African-born Harris came to Britain with her family in the 1970s and shows an acute understanding of how it feels to be an outsider...a welcome discovery - a new novelist whose next book you are already impatient to read (THE GUARDIAN)

Shelley Harris's remarkably assured debut novel is rooted in the Silver Jubilee celebrations of June 1977...shrewdly observed...The pitch-perfect children's banter and accurate period detail lead authenticity to her prose...an exciting debut that suggests this author will offer many more insightful and compelling stories in the years ahead (James Urquhart THE INDEPENDENT)

Boldly plotted and confidently executed, its momentum maintained to the end (DAILY MAIL)

Recreating an iconic photograph of a village street party celebrating the 1977 Jubilee stirs up buried memories, forcing the one Asian boy in the picture to confront himself and his past. Nostalgic and moving (WOMAN & HOME)

IN A NUTSHELL: A sinister secret is dragged into the spotlight after 30 years. PLOT: It's the Queen's Jubilee, 1977, and a photographer snaps an Asian boy at a street party. The photo becomes iconic, and years later the boy is asked to reenact it. Satish, now a successful cardiologist, refuses, but won't say why. Questions are asked and a secret he's kept all those years threatens to ruin his life. WHY READ IT?: Apart from reliving the days of punk and platforms, the suspense simply builds and builds (ESSENTIALS)

The genius of this novel is in the gentle way that the mysteries of the narrative unfold, fully immersing you in the story so that the twists and turns really do take you by surprise in a thoroughly refreshing way... Harris is a truthful writer, and does not shy away from representing the most deplorable sides of human nature. As a troubled and flawed anti-hero, Satish is all the more likeable and relatable to the everyman, and will have the reader laughing with joy and crying out with anguish as he attempts to confront his demons. [The novel] has a heart and soul, a strong moral - yet it never feels didactic, and deep down it fills you with a joyous sense of delight and satisfaction with every turn of the page (WE LOVE THIS BOOK)

Photographs capture a moment, but it is what went on before and after that drives this story. Satish becomes the symbol of an evolving nation when he is snapped at a Silver Jubliee party; but the damage done shapes him 30 years on as he struggles to maintain his family life (SAINSBURY'S MAGAZINE)

Cardiologist Satish is settled with a family. But he is terrified of revisiting the past when a project is launched to reunite the subjects of a 1977 Silver Jubilee street party photo, of which Satish was the star. Racism, childhood relationships and hidden secrets are explored in Shelley Harris' debut novel (STAR magazine)

Shelley Harris's accomplished debut novel Jubilee follows the lasting effect of events at a 1977 Silver Jubilee street party (CHOICE magazine)

Set during the Silver Jubilee of 1977, with scenes from the hero's later life, this deft and moving debut offers more than Seventies nostalgia. A conflict-ridden street party proves a turning point for young Satish, from a family of Ugandan Asian refugees - and for his new community ('i' newspaper)

Book Description

A heartwarming and nostalgic novel set during a street party for the Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1977.

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By Denise4891🌟 TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 5 Jun. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Jubilee centres around a snapshot taken during a street party to celebrate the Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1977. The photograph becomes iconic, firstly because it features a small Asian boy and is held up as an example of multicultural Britain, and later when a punk bank use a pastiche of the photo on their album cover.

30 years later the photographer wants to recreate the moment with the original `cast' but gets mixed reactions from those involved, not all of whom want to remember the events of that turbulent day. The Asian boy, Satish, is now a successful consultant paediatric cardiologist and a happily married father of two. However, beneath the surface he is wrestling with demons of his own, and the thought of dredging up unhappy memories from his childhood does not appeal. Satish's family had fled to the UK from Uganda in the early 70s and at the time of the Jubilee were still struggling to establish themselves as British citizens. Their integration into the quiet Buckinghamshire street where the party takes place has not always been smooth, so tempers fray and hidden prejudices come to the fore as the residents of Cherry Gardens prepare for the big day.

The tension builds slowly and the pace overall is fairly sedate, with just one or two flashes of violence. Shelley Harris, who herself came to Britain as a child in the 70s, has successfully recreated a sense of time and place, and whilst there's a pleasing amount of retro detail, she has thankfully managed to resist laying on the nostalgic references with a trowel (which must be tempting with this sort of book). The novel is not about the Jubilee itself, but more about the subsequent lives of this disparate group of people who came together on 7th June 1977 to celebrate it. I found it a very interesting and perceptive debut novel.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Good page turner as you want to know what happens, which is revealed to you slowly. A good concept for a book, that a photo is just a snap shot of a fraction of a moment and does not truly tell what is going on and what happens before and after the moment and therefore does not tell a fraction of the story let a lone the whole story. If you like books with big revealing endings, this is not it but if you like stories which make you think about society, how people become the people they are and what influences tehir life choics then this will do that.
There were times when I was frustrated with the lead character but time reveals why he behaves the way he does.
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By Cass on 17 Jun. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Sorry to say.but i didn't like this at all.For me ,it just rambled on,and i'm just grateful i've finished. very slow and generally dull!
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Format: Hardcover
Although this is a story of many other things than a silver jubilee party, there's no doubt that a large part of the appeal of the book, for me and I'm sure for others, was the way it so vividly transported me back to such an iconic day - the politics of our street party, the roll out of the day, the people that my family and neighbours were...and then, it set me thinking about where we all are now and how our lives turn out as compared to the characters in the book. Even if you didn't spend the silver jubilee at a street party Jubilee is a great story; its themes treated with humanity and reality rather than drama for its own sake - moving, insightful and occasionally shocking. If you too can own up to listening to David Soul, jumping elastic in the playground and eating Artic Roll it's an absolute must-read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Jubilee is the story of a photograph. It's the story of how a moment in time, captured between glass and leather, can hold so much more than a thirty-year memory. Shelley Harris has created a wonderful hero in Satish. He is perfectly flawed, finding reassurance in the distance he has created between himself and others, and hiding his past within a measured life. When Satish is forced to acknowledge what happened on Jubilee Day, his self-control begins to unravel and the darker side of Cherry Gardens is exposed. This is a beautifully told story. The author's outstanding eye for detail has created an incredibly powerful book, sprinkled with fabulous memories, and anyone who was there will be transported straight back to the late 1970s. It is down to the skill of the author and the exquisite ability of her story-telling that Satish's narrative is so moving and so painfully beautiful. A very personal and heart-breaking tale told against the backdrop of a national event. I can't recommend it enough.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Jubilee was a very entertaining read. I didn't check reviews before finishing the book, but I do agree that it could be a little difficult to become emotionally involved with Satish - more like watching with interest from the sidelines. The key issues of the plot were thought-provoking, especially getting to understand better what children like Satish would have had to cope with at that time from all generations of established white families. As the story alternated between 'then and now', occasionally I would begin a chapter and not be sure of the setting for a couple of paragraphs. At the same time it's no mean feat to skilfully dovetail two time frames, and this was really well done. I might have liked to get to know Satish's children a little better, with maybe an occasional illustration of how far our society has come in terms of happy integration, and Satish's reaction to that. So I 'do' care! Anyway, Jubilee is a very good read, and well recommended. I look forward to Shelley's next book, Vigilante, due out next year.
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