Family Roundabout (1948) by Richmal Crompton

Book Review by Ros W: Richmal Crompton is better known for her William books, even though she wrote over forty novels and nine short story collections for adults. Family Roundabout centres around two families in a country town called Bellington and covers the period from the early 1920s to 1939. The Willoughbys and the Fowlers … Continue reading

The Ship (1943) by C.S. Forester

Book Review by George S: The Ship was first published in 1943, when the outcome of the war was still uncertain, and it bears the marks of a book composed for the purposes of propaganda. It is the story of the Artemis, a light cruiser accompanying a convoy of merchant ships to the besieged island … Continue reading

Caroline (1936), by Richmal Crompton

Funny how Caroline’s eyes betrayed her exasperation rather than her voice or manner. They were almost grey when she was pleased, but they turned a clear cold blue when she was annoyed or irritated. (ch 2) In Caroline and other novels, like Narcissa (1941), Richmal Crompton explores appalling, outrageous, even monstrous behaviour masquerading as normal; … Continue reading

Millicent Dorrington (1927) by Richmal Crompton

Book Review by George S: I’ve always thought of Richmal Crompton as the quintessential Home Counties writer. The smugness of that area has never been beter caught than in Crompton’s depiction of the commuter-belt village that so restricts the free spirit of William. But in fact, she was born and brought up in Bury, and … Continue reading

The Charioteer (1953) by Mary Renault

Book review by Alice C: The book has lain unread on my bookshelves for several years, so during lockdown I decided to shake it out and open it up. I haven’t read any books by Mary Renault so The Charioteer was my first. I expected it would be all sandals and togas and Greek gods. … Continue reading

Merlin Bay (1930) by Richmal Crompton

Merlin Bay (1930) by Richmal Crompton Book review by Frances S: I first came upon William Brown in a 1950s edition of William Carries On from the family bookcase and subsequently enjoyed various television adaptations and the Martin Jarvis Radio 4 readings. I knew very little about Richmal Crompton herself until Reading 1900-1950 invited us … Continue reading