England's Lane

Joseph Connolly

England's Lane

Jim and Milly. Stan and Jane. Jonathan and Fiona. Winter, 1959. Three married couples: each living in England's Lane, each with an only child, and each attending to family, and their livelihoods - the ironmonger, the sweetshop and the butcher. Each of them hiding their lies, coping in the only way they know how. 3.6 out of 5 based on 5 reviews
England's Lane

Omniscore:

Classification Fiction
Genre General Fiction
Format Hardcover
Pages 496
RRP
Date of Publication August 2012
ISBN 978-1780877181
Publisher Quercus
 

Jim and Milly. Stan and Jane. Jonathan and Fiona. Winter, 1959. Three married couples: each living in England's Lane, each with an only child, and each attending to family, and their livelihoods - the ironmonger, the sweetshop and the butcher. Each of them hiding their lies, coping in the only way they know how.

Eighty Years of Book Cover Design by Joseph Connolly

Reviews

The Daily Mail

John Harding

Flitting in and out of the minds of the major characters, Connolly unfolds a rich and compelling drama of life that is anything but everyday, with Dickensian attention to detail, trademark black humour and a genuine love for his creations.

13/09/2012

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The Observer

Adam Mars-Jones

All the principal monologues, in fact, have a disagreeable texture. Jonathan's mind is like a fierce old tweed that has become greasy with wear but still chafes the skin, and Milly snags the reader's toenails like a nylon bedsheet. If you don't enjoy having your teeth set on edge then perhaps this isn't the book for you. It's difficult to combine the use of interior monologue with the advancement of a plot, a problem which Joyce solved by relegating plot to the far background. Here the stream of consciousness only seems to meander, and is actually pulled along by a purposeful undertow towards the weir of the next incident or confrontation.

07/10/2012

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The Guardian

Gerard Woodward

While the novel makes a virtue of over-the-top melodrama and grand guignol, it never quite balances it with any serious probing into the inner lives of its characters. If they do change and develop, one is never sure how or why. The real subject of this novel is England's Lane itself, and the era in which it is depicted; sometimes the characters seem provided solely for the animation of this meticulously constructed tableau of 1950s consumerism ...

07/09/2012

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The Times

Kate Saunders

The tone is chatty and intimate, which makes the dark spots all the more chilling.

08/09/2012

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The Daily Telegraph

David Annand

Unfortunately for Milly, however, she is overburdened not just with debt and guilt but also with the period detail that so often characterises contemporary fiction set in the past … There is, I suspect, a very good book lurking in these pages. The novel is not short of incident and Connolly has a keen sense of the hushed emotional tenderness of English life and our silent shattering pain, but these quiet observations are drowned out by ceaseless chatter, of which there is simply far too much.

20/09/2012

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