Monday, 8 December 2008

Smoke in the Valley by David Kynaston

Everything I said about A World to Build holds true for Kynaston's next chapter, which takes us from 1948 to 1951 through a lucid and fascinating account drawing on diaries, contemporary histories and subsequent analysis. He often finds contemporary writing about the issues he covers that challenge the accepted historical view; I was particularly taken with his analysis of Godfrey Winn's account of suburban life as a happy and satisfied one, greatly contrary to contemporary and subsequent commentary. I look forward to the next volume of the Tales of the New Jerusalem - if they all turn out as marvellous as the first two, they will be a huge joy.

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