An absorbing novel of politics, family fractures and scandal in late 70s Britain.
Jimmie Johnston first became a Labour MP in Cumbria when there was a brave new post-war world to build. Now, in the late 70s, another general election looms but he is no longer so optimistic. And as he fights to keep his seat, his family begins to fracture around him and scandal threatens. In this absorbing and fast-paced novel, Melvyn Bragg's portrait of the mood and politics of the era remains as pertinent today as on its original publication.
Melvyn Bragg is quite simply one of the best writers we have - Sunday Telegraph
A gripping novel...there is a demonic streak in Bragg's imagination, something excitingly macabre - Listener
Very good, very pleasurable and very authentic...an extremely well-timed book - Anthony Howard
There are certain writers - Lawrence, Hardy, Bennett - whose novels seem to grow from the very soil that nurtured them. Melvyn Bragg is one of them: his characters' roots are firmly in Cumbria...The writing and characterisation are powerful - Daily Telegraph
Melvyn Bragg is a writer and broadcaster whose first novel, For Want of a Nail, was published in 1965. His novels since include The Maid of Buttermere, The Soldier's Return, Credo and Now is the Time, which won the Parliamentary Book Award for fiction in 2016. His books have also been awarded the Time/Life Silver Pen Award, the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize and the WHSmith Literary Award, and have been longlisted three times for the Booker Prize (including the Lost Man Booker Prize).
He has also written several works of non-fiction, including The Adventure of English and The Book of Books about the King James Bible. He lives in London and Cumbria.