Tagged with working-class fiction

Love on the Dole by Walter Greenwood (1933)

Book review by Chris Hopkins. Having now posted blogs about most of Walter Greenwood’s fiction, I realise that these pretty much all refer back to his first novel, Love on the Dole (1933), so for the sake of completeness and to help the blog reader, I ought to add a blog for that first novel. … Continue reading

The Trelooe Trilogy by Walter Greenwood [So Brief the Spring (1952), What Everybody Wants (1954) and Down by the Sea (1956)].

Book review posted by Chris Hopkins (the review is slightly longer than usual – it seemed best to review the whole trilogy in one post). Between 1952 and 1956 Greenwood completed his Trelooe Trilogy (published by Hutchinson – all references are to the first editions). The trilogy was set in Cornwall, where Greenwood had holidayed … Continue reading

The Secret Kingdom (1938) by Walter Greenwood

Book review by Chris Hopkins. Walter Greenwood’s father was a hairdresser and by the time he married Elizabeth Matilda Walter he had opened his own hairdresser’s shop (‘Tom’s Hairdressing Saloon’) at 56 Ellor Street, Salford (the premises are pictured in the frontispiece to Greenwood’s memoir, There Was A Time, 1967 and also on the Salford University … Continue reading

Standing Room Only (1936) by Walter Greenwood

Book Review posted by Chris Hopkins. Walter Greenwood is best remembered (indeed often only remembered) for his first novel, Love on the Dole (1933). This review is one of a series of blogs where I will try to start reviving a fuller memory of his literary career through introducing the other novels he wrote after … Continue reading

The Cleft Stick (1937) by Walter Greenwood

Review by Sylvia D: The Cleft Stick is a collection of 15 short stories. Although the book wasn’t published until 1937, all but two of the stories were written between 1928 and 1931. As Greenwood says in the Preface, they ‘were the products of the ‘prentice hand’ – (p9). They are all set in the … Continue reading

Miss Mannering by W. Pett Ridge (1923)

Review by Sylvia D: I enjoyed W Pett Ridge’s Miss Mannering (1923) for three reasons.  First, the novel had an unlikely theme, focusing as it does for much on the time on the proprietor, staff and customers of a basement cafe in the City of London at the beginning of the twentieth century.  Second, I … Continue reading

The Stars Look Down by A J Cronin (1935)

Review by Helen N: This book if expressed simplistically might be expressed in the words of the old Music Hall song – It’s the same the whole world over… It’s the Poor what gets the blame but it is much more than this. It lays bare the poverty and danger of the lives of miners … Continue reading

Riceyman Steps by Arnold Bennett (1923)

Review by Helen N: I found the book very easy to read. Bennett’s style is straightforward and he paints a vivid picture of the Clerkenwell area of London just after the First World War. There is a small cast of people: Henry Earlforward, a reclusive and miserly bookseller and Mrs. Violet Arb, a widow,  meet … Continue reading

Fame is the Spur by Howard Spring (1940)

Review by George Simmers. See his Great War Fiction blog (with other posts on Howard Spring) here. This is a very readable, extremely absorbing, epic of the career of a Labour politician, tracing his life from childhood poverty to the House of Lords. It can be taken as strong’s version of the idealistic rise, and … Continue reading