Little Boy Lost (1949) by Marghanita Laski

Book review by Sylvia D: I don’t know where Marghanita Laski sits in the Pantheon of novelists published between 1900 and 1950 but a Persephone Books The Captive Reader article in 2018 says, ‘She epitomizes the middle brow, writing about seemingly-serious topics in a titillating way with basic, extremely readable prose. Little Boy Lost is particularly … Continue reading

Magnolia Street (1932) by Louis Golding

Book review by George S.: Magnolia Street is rather like two later books, Howard Spring’s Manchester saga, Fame is the Spur, and Walter Greenwood’s Love on the Dole (set in Salford), in that it has a large cast of characters, mostly presented in a Dickensian way, with each of them given some striking and memorable … Continue reading

Mystery in Geneva (1922) by Rose Macaulay

Book Review by Kathryn R: Mystery at Geneva – An Improbable Tale of Singular Happenings is a short novel, telling the story of Henry Beechtree, a newspaper correspondent for the British Bolshevist who is in Geneva for a meeting of the League of Nations in the early 1920s. The book opens with the following note … Continue reading

Crewe Train (1926) by Rose Macaulay (another review)

Book review by Sylvia D: This novel has the most wonderful dedication: ‘To the Philistines, The Barbarians, The Unsociables and those who do not care to take any trouble’. This immediately appealed to the rebel in me and although Denham Dobie (named after her mother’s favourite village in Buckinghamshire) is one of the most odd … Continue reading

Potterism (1920) by Rose Macaulay

Book review by George Simmers: In this novel, Rose Macaulay gives her diagnosis of what is wrong with Britain after the end of the First World War. She sums this up in one word: ‘Potterism’. Which means sentimentality, materialism, mental laziness, and the avoidance of awkward truths. Mr Potter is a press baron; ‘a small, … Continue reading

They Were Defeated (1932) by Rose Macaulay

Book Review by Mary Grover: They were Defeated was said to be Rose Macaulay’s favorite novel. Published in 1932, this historical novel about intellectual life during the mid seventeenth century was well reviewed but never proved as popular as her contemporary novels. There is a double focus: the poetry and opinions of the real poet … Continue reading

Crewe Train (1926) by Rose Macaulay

Book review by Frances S: ‘We have some very bright evenings. There’s a nice reading circle, too.’‘A what?’ Denham was apprehensive.‘A reading circle. You all study some book together, and meet and talk about it’‘What for?’‘What funny questions you do ask, to be sure.’ Crewe Train (apparently a reference to the 19th century music hall … Continue reading

Living Alone (1919) by Stella Benson

Book review by Sophie H: Stella Benson’s 1919 novel Living Alone opens with an eccentric young woman (who is later revealed to have magical powers) bursting into a meeting of the ‘Committee for War Savings’, after being chased for stealing a bun. The witch, who through a misunderstanding eventually becomes known as Angela although she … Continue reading

The Flight of the Heron (1925) by D.K. Broster

Book Review by Frances S: The Flight of the Heron is an adventure set in Scotland during the Jacobite rising of 1745-46 when Charles Edward Stuart tried to assert his claim to the throne of the United Kingdom by force of arms. Broster’s central characters are fictitious, but the real events and people with whom … Continue reading