Tag Archives: Yorkshire

Elmet by Fiona Mozley

Elmet Fiona MozleyLast year’s Man Booker Prize longlist was largely dominated by established authors apart from the surprise inclusion of PhD student Fiona Mozley with her debut novel ‘Elmet’ which made the shortlist but lost out to Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders for the overall prize. Set in Yorkshire, it tells the story of teenage siblings Daniel and Cathy and their father Daddy (also known as John) who relocate from their red-brick house in town to secluded woodland where they have built their own home by hand and living according to ethical principles. However, they soon come into conflict with the rich landowners, putting their way of life in danger. 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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A Kestrel for a Knave by Barry Hines

Having got my craving for chick lit out of my system for another year, I have been reading ‘A Kestrel for a Knave’ by Barry Hines, one of the grittiest books I’ve read in a while.  Set in South Yorkshire in 1968 over the course of a single day, fifteen year old Billy Casper finds Kes, a kestrel hawk, who he learns to take care of and confide in.  It’s an accurate and poignant portrait of life in northern England at that time (so my mother tells me) and although the book has a very specific setting, it has timeless qualities and themes that would still resonate with disaffected youth today. Continue reading

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