The Broken Chariot

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9780002252218: The Broken Chariot

Alan Sillitoe is one of the great English writers of the twentieth century. His latest novel is funny, picaresque – a joy.

When Herbert Thurgarton-Strang was seven, his parents – as loving, as doting as any parents of their generation – took him away from India and left him in a boarding school in England which had everything to recommend it except pity. Through the stifling, alarming years which follow, Herbert is held together by the notion of revenge on those loving parents, and by the knowledge that, over there, a new world beckons.

And when he’s seventeen, he steals away from school, steals away from Herbert, becomes a different boy; becomes, in Nottingham, Bert the lathe-worker, Bert the womaniser, Bert the soldier, Bert the sometime bruiser. Plunged into the louche life, he bobs like a cork.

Herbert/Bert is one of Alan Sillitoe’s most superb creations: through him we see love, life and class in the post-war world.

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Review:

‘A major writer who ought to be read.’
Malcolm Bradbury

‘Sillitoe writes with tremendous energy, and his stories simply tear along.’
Daily Telegraph

‘Alan Sillitoe, the long-distance runner of English novelists, shows no signs of flagging’
Evening Standard

‘Our staunchest provincial realist… a muscled prose that’s craftsman-like in its efficiency’
Observer

‘Graphic, tough, outspoken, informal’
The Times

‘His writing has real experience in it and an instinctive accuracy that never loses its touch.’
Guardian

‘One of Britain’s most powerful and sophisticated fiction writers’
Times Literary Supplement

‘Very outspoken and vivid.’
Sunday Times

From the Back Cover:

Alan Sillitoes's first full-length novel for five years, 'The Broken Chariot' is funny, picaresque – a joy.

When Herbert Thurgarton-Strang was seven, his parents – as loving, as doting as any parents of their generation – took him away from India and left him in a boarding school in England which had everything to recommend it except pity.

Through the stifling, alarming years which follow, Herbert is held together by his desire for revenge on those loving parents, and by the knowledge that, out there, a new world beckons.

And when he's seventeen, he steals away from school, steals away from Herbert, becomes a different boy; becomes, in Nottingham, Bert the lathe-worker, Bert the womanizer, Bert the soldier, Bert the sometime bruiser. Plunged into the louche life, he bobs like a cork.

Herbert/ Bert is one of Alan Sillitoe's most superb creations: through him we see love, life and class in post-war England.

"Sillitoe keeps on going… never flagging, never looking back, and writing with a vigour, clarity and humanity that should be the envy of all those novelists who were not even born when he started."
DAILY MAIL

"A fluent, easy delivery, untainted by mannerisms; well-honed dialogue; sharp characterisation; economy of narrative; generosity of outlook. It really is a delightful book."
SUNDAY TELEGRAPH (of 'Alligator Playground')

"What impresses one, as ever, about Sillitoe, is the ease of a style which yet allows him to expose the most complex emotions, and his ability to bring to light what people hide from themselves, or choose not to admit. Sillitoe has a rare ability to look hard at life, and an even rarer sense of the mysterious inwardness of people."
THE SCOTSMAN

"Our staunchest provincial realist… a muscled prose that's craftsman-like in its efficiency."
OBSERVER

"One of Britain's most powerful and sophisticated fiction writers"
TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT

"A major writer who ought to be read."
MALCOLM BRADBURY

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