Tuesday, July 26, 2005

34: No one can say no to the bastard

Possibly the worst tag line I've ever seen for a book. Certainly the worst cover I've seen on a book in ages (I realise that a scan would have brought out its awful seventiesness much more effectively than a crappy photo of the cover, but I can't be arsed going all the way upstairs to the scanner). If I was Beryl Bainbridge I'd have sued someone. Maybe she did.

The book itself is slight enough and is of the type that Bainbridge seems to have given up, which is just as well because the itroverted girl who gets taken for a ride by the bastard man of the world was done best in An Awfully Big Adventure, and thankfully it's kind of old and not very believable (maybe I'm just lucky and know strong women).

More interesting is the period detail. The family huddled around in a small dining room at Christmas, the mother constantly rubbing the backs of the chair legs to make sure the electric fire isn't scorching them, everyone trying not to trip over the cord on the electric carving knife, that kind of thing. I'm glad Beryl Bainbridge has moved on to the crisp history of According to Queenie or Master Georgie, but even a second division Bainbridge like Sweet William was worth the few hours it took to read it.

Original comments
Is that Sam Waterston and Jenny Agutter on the cover? That could be worth something.
Posted by StevieB on Jul. 28 2005, at 4:19 PM

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