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A Long Way from Verona

A Long Way from Verona

Author(s): Jane Gardam

Location(s): Yorkshire

Genre(s): Fiction

Era(s): WW2



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A long way from Verona this certainly is!! No mention of Verona, the book is set in North Yorkshire – quite possibly Redcar – and is narrated through the eyes of Jessica Vye, the thirteen-year-old daughter of a local clergyman.
“I ought to tell you at the beginning that I am not quite normal having had a violent experience at the age of nine”

Jessica Vye’s ‘violent experience’ colours her schooldays and her reaction to the world around her- a confining world of Order Marks, wartime restrictions, viyella dresses, nicely-restrained essays and dusty tea shops. For Jessica she has been told that she is ‘beyond all possible doubt’, a born writer. With her inability to conform, her absolute compulsion to tell the truth and her dedication to accurately noting her experiences, she knows this anyway. But what she doesn’t know is that the experiences that sustain and enrich her burgeoning talent will one day lead to a new- and entirely unexpected- reality.

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‘The flavour of this brilliantly witty and agonisingly true-to-life novel is impossible to convey. One even wants to quote endlessly.’ TLS

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