A beautiful new edition of Lavinia Greenlaw's mesmerising debut novel about growing up in the surreal banality of mid-'70s Essex. 'A poet's eye clearly informs Greenlaw's beautifully observed portrait of Seventies provincial life. In prose layered like paint, Greenlaw conjures up the period through details that will strike endless chords with readers who grew up at that time...This is a suggestive, elusive novel, which achieves a magical effect by the gradual accumulation of images.' Vogue Lavinia Greenlaw puts before us the monochrome, immemorial middle England of the 1970s in all its dowdy glory, and has us see through the mercurial, bewitching Mary George's eyes how a seemingly static landscape is suddenly illuminated by the most vivid bursts of energy, colour and drama. Punk's torch flares into life and singes the fringes of England. Mary George bears witness and burns brighter still: she is more memorable than even the extraordinary events around her, and the reader will find it devastatingly hard to leave her company at the end of this exceptional debut about growing up under the shadow of an unknowable, inescapable small-town mystery.
LAVINIA GREENLAW is the author of three books of poetry, Night Photograph (1993), which was shortlisted for the Whitbread and Forward awards, A World Where News Travelled Slowly (1997), the title poem of which won the Forward prize, and Minsk (2003), which was shortlisted for the Forward. Her second novel, An Irresponsible Age, will be published by HarperCollins in May 2005. She currently teaches Creative Writing at Goldsmiths College, University of London and lives in north London with her partner and daughter.