Penguin Viking

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My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout: Loneliness and how to survive it

Sometimes you want to tell everyone you know just how good an author is, press their books into as many hands as possible. I’ve felt that way about Elizabeth Strout’s writing for some time. My proof copy’s jacket proclaims her  ‘the greatest American writer you’ve never heard of’. That may be less true than it …

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Mr Lynch’s Holiday by Catherine O’Flynn: A novel with heart and humour

Catherine O’Flynn’s new novel comes with the kind of bright and breezy jacket that makes you want to pick it up plus a recommendation from Jonathan Coe praising her writing to the skies. Expectations were high, then, for this story of a father and son viewing each others’ lives uncomprehendingly across the chasm of misunderstandings, …

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