Tag Archives: 1950s

Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates

Revolutionary Road RIchard Yates‘Revolutionary Road’ by Richard Yates tells the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a married couple in their late twenties living in Connecticut on the Revolutionary Hill Estates with their two young children in 1955. Frank commutes to New York City but finds his job at Knox Business Machines very dull with few long-term prospects while April had dreamed of becoming an actress before marriage and motherhood led her to be a housewife. They long to escape their life in suburbia which they see as stifling and unfulfilling but their circumstances change when April discovers that she is pregnant again. Continue reading

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Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson

Behind the Scenes at the Museum Kate Atkinson‘Behind the Scenes at the Museum’ is Kate Atkinson’s debut novel first published in 1995 and narrated by Ruby Lennox born in 1952 to a middle-class family who live above a pet shop in York. The plot alternates between chapters recounting significant events in Ruby’s childhood during the 1950s and 1960s and extended “footnotes” about the earlier generations of her family told in non-chronological order. Most significantly, the story of what happened to Ruby’s great-grandmother Alice has implications for the whole family for many years to come.  Continue reading

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This Boy by Alan Johnson

This Boy‘This Boy’ is Alan Johnson’s memoir of his childhood growing up in poverty in North Kensington during the 1950s and early 1960s. His womanising father Steve was mostly absent and his mother Lily struggled to provide a better life for her children whilst suffering from a chronic heart condition. After she died at the age of forty-two when Johnson was thirteen, his sixteen-year-old sister Linda fought for them to stay together in their own council flat despite their young age. Continue reading

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The Outcast by Sadie Jones

The OutcastSet in England in the 1950s, ‘The Outcast’ by Sadie Jones tells the story of nineteen year old Lewis Aldridge and his return to his childhood home in a small village in Surrey after spending two years in prison.  Tensions both at home and in the community soon become darker as it becomes clear that Lewis will never really be able to make a fresh start in Waterford and let go of his troubled past.  Never has the British stiff upper lip seemed so resistant to change. Continue reading

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