Their Finest Hour And A Half Paperback – 1 Jan 2010
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"[Lissa Evans] displays a fine eye for detail and for the absurdities involved in filming. She also brilliantly evokes the disruption and dangers of wartime London. This funny, heart-warming and beautifully crafted novel is a must-read" (Daily Mail)
"Beautifully written, minutely observed and researched, evocative and very funny tale" (Michele Hanson Guardian)
"Comic, poignant and altogether delightful, raised spirits are guaranteed" (Easy Living)
"This is a comic novel, but far warmer in tone and broader in scope than that label would suggest...Gloriously observed...Hilliard is a wonderful creation - and Evans's recreated propaganda scripts are a total joy. Delicious" (The Times)
"Pitch-perfect in tone and populated by some unforgettable characters, Lissa Evans's blackly comic new novel is a delight" (The Gloss Magazine)
This funny, heart-warming and beautifully crafted novel is a must-read. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Lissa Evans brings together the stories of some of the cast and crew and of the development of the film itself against a background of the London blitz. All the characters are portrayed well, especially Ambrose Hilliard, embittered and fading actor, whose grim memories of the previous war surface at times and, and Catrin Cole, who ends up, more or less by accident, helping to write the film.
The book has funny moments, tender moments and sad moments. It creates an entirely believable atmosphere of wartime London, populated by convincing characters who one sympathises with more and more. It is also something of a page turner. The whole things is cleverly structured as a cinema programme, from the "trailers", though "informational shorts", to the "main feature" and finally, "forthcoming attractions". Overall, it is excellent.
Baker Films has been commissioned to create a film based on a rescue made at Dunkirk, and though the facts of the story are dubious, it will make for a ripping yarn and a shot in the arm for Blitz-weary Brits (and perhaps it will encourage the still-neutral States to lend a hand). There are three main characters, all well-developed, and numerous others who populate this rich, layered novel. I fell in love with Buckley and even with sweet Arthur Frith, who polishes his spectacles as a nervous habit and isn't quite sure why he's suddenly on a film set.
Their Finest Hour and a Half brings together several of my loves: history, film, humor and skillful writing. Not only are those loves united, but united seamlessly and entertainingly. Shot through with laughter, warmth and a touch of cynicism, this book is a keeper.
Catrin finds herself moved from writing advertising copy to working on propaganda films. Wrapped up in her first love affair, she can’t see that her ‘husband’ is indifferent to whether she is in his life or not. But as she starts to gain confidence in her new career, she also gains insight into her own life….
Ambrose was voted the third most popular British film star in 1924. Unfortunately in his head he hasn’t moved on from those heights and his agent is too good-natured to point out the truth. Luckily his agent has a sister who believes in plain speaking.
Edith is a seamstress at Madame Tussaud’s. In her thirties and somewhat insular she has managed to create an ordered and even beautiful bolt-hole for herself until the bombing raids force her out of her comfort zone.
All three of them are thrown together when they become involved in a film charting the ‘heroic’ rescue by twin sisters of soldiers from the Dunkirk beaches. And in the process they encounter shy, awkward, Arthur – a former catering manager who has now been elevated to ‘Special Military Adviser’ on the film – for no better reason than he happens to be in uniform as far as he can see.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I bought this after reading Crooked Heart ( which I loved as it was funny and warm) but was a little disappointed with this one. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Michelle
Brilliant! Really funny, but also a novel who's characters you really care about☺️Published 6 months ago by Karen Pagan
a very different kind of read & totally engrossing. very funny & eccentric characters are nonetheless remarkably real & sympathetic, one would think this would be impossible to do... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Zangiku
Really enjoyed this unusual and absorbing story. Fascinating alternative take on the story of WW2's home front.Published 12 months ago by MsCMSAttlee
Quite well written - a few nice twists and turns - somewhat spoiled by the killing off of a character near the end of the book. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Impressed
I read Crooked Heart byLissa Evans which was given to me as a present and absolutely loved it.I hadn't read anything by this author previously and so looked on Amazon kindle for... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Mrs Joan Farquhar
Good read and very well researched. Enjoyed her latest book also. One to watchPublished 20 months ago by Mrs. J. Orchard
Funny, touching, and beautifully researched, so evocative of the period in which it is set. I thoroughly enjoyed it. There is a fuller review on my blog at christinepoulson.co.ukPublished 20 months ago by C. Poulson