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on 14 May 2014
A strange book,I would not call it a novel.Very difficult to identify the characters or feel any interest in them.
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on 26 January 2014
Atmospheric and touching, the lives of people living on the boats of the Thames at Chelsea.
Funny, observant and with child characters who feel so real they might live next door.
Most of all I loved the intimate knowledge the characters have of the river -its tides and its moods, and the language only people closely acquainted with the river- such as the people who work on it- would use.
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on 15 September 2014
A superb book, very tightly written with subtle humour, although rather an indefinite ending may worry some readers of a tidy mind, The characters were finely drawn, as was the fascinating background of living on the river. he issues between the characters were skilfully executed and it was another great book by Penelope Fitzgerald which I would highly recommend.
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on 12 August 2016
I absolutely adored this book. One of my favourite books ever. It is so beautifully written it takes my breath away. And the whole story of a community of unorthodox people living on decrepit sailing barges on the tidal Thames just appeals to everything in me as a barge owner myself. I've read it twice now and will definitely read it again.
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on 7 February 2014
I wanted to read this book as it is close to where I grew up. Fitzgerald is an excellent writer but I always feel as if it is not quite in this world so is hard to relate to. She portrays scenes and characters brilliantly but they still feel like cardboard cutouts on a set rather than part of the community
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on 22 January 2015
Nothing much happens in this novel - it's more about the atmosphere.

Does give you a feeling for what it must be like to live on a boat, although the characters aren't necessary ones you'd like to live with.
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on 3 August 2016
It's a wonderful eliptical, funny, wise, beautifully written book where the characters stay with you in their bitter-sweet way and make you wish you could hang onto them as they float on. Fabulous writing.
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on 7 January 2014
This is a great read, creating a marvellous picture of the boat-dwellers on the Battersea mudflats close to Chelsea,The storyline is gripping, and one gets a real insight into the characters portrayed.
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on 31 January 2014
Brilliant, brilliant writing. A snapshot of an eccentric way of life; conjuring up 60's London emerging from post-war gloom. Beautifully drawn characters where the children are the clearest sighted.
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on 5 June 2015
Bought for a friend and received with joy
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