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The Glass Room

by Simon Mawer

This book was shortlisted for the Man Booker prize in 2009, but don't let that put you off. It is an exciting, moving and beautiful novel that tells us about life in Europe between the wars. It draws it's characters in broad brushstrokes, but we learn more about them at each meeting, as they play out their "beautiful" lives, often oblivious to the storm clouds of war gathering around them. Well researched, but wearing it's learning lightly, the character-driven story sums up the art, dreams and rotten core of the 1930s. Not everyone survives these turbulent times, but it is not a depressing read as it celebrates people's resilience.

Suggested by Paul Hughes, Bridlington, East Yorkshire

Tagged with: fascinating moving, profound



I agree, I really enjoyed reading this. Not a word is wasted, and you get the sense of the same efficiency of space and purpose that an architect would use to design a house like this. I particularly liked the way the history builds powerfully - but always in the background.

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