The L-Shaped Room

The L-Shaped Room is another of my bargain car-boot buys that I’ve had kicking around for a while; I’m not ashamed to admit that I picked it for the purple and red cover…

My other favourite thing about the book were the collection of dysfunctional (but varied) characters. These varied from jazz playing giant to feral actors, spinster Aunts to hoarding seamstresses, anti-Semitic PR execs to drunken landladies…. something for all tastes it would seem…

There were, however, quite a few bits of the book that I struggled with. I found some of the attitudes towards abortion and pregnancy a bit uncomfortable… this probably has more to do with the social norms of 1960 (when the novel was written) than the personal views of the author, but still… the DIY abortion methods and boozing while pregnant made me feel a bit uneasy. The racism and extreme homophobia wasn’t that much fun either. Maybe I’m just being overly sensitive?

Lynne Reid Banks has a narrative voice that is SO easy to read despite the less than savoury subject matter, which is what compelled me to keep reading (as even the supposedly happy-sappy-lovey-dovey bits were on the grim side…) I don’t doubt that the gritty view of unmarried pregnancy is exactly what Banks was trying to project, I just have to be honest; it really wasn’t my cup of tea. However if you’re into social realism, you’d love it- the historical aspects of the novel are fascinating, if slightly horrible.

More soon,

D x


2 thoughts on “The L-Shaped Room

  1. Pingback: Reading Update: September/October | Doing it the Open Way

  2. Pingback: Reading Challenge 2012, the final count | Doing it the Open Way

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s