War damage - Elizabeth Wilson

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War damage
Elizabeth Wilson
Paperback / softback
Serpent's Tail
UK Publication Date

London in the aftermath of WW2 is a beaten down, hungry place, so it's no wonder that Regine Milner's Sunday house parties in her Hampstead home are so popular. Everyone comes to Reggie's on a Sunday: ballet dancers and cabinet ministers, left-over Mosleyites alongside flamboyant homosexuals like Freddie Buckingham. And when Freddie turns up dead on the Heath one Sunday night there is no shortage of suspects.War Damage is both a high-class thriller and a wonderful evocation of Britain staggering back to its feet after the privations of the War. And in Regine Milner it possesses a truly memorable heroine. She's full of secrets - just what did happen in Shanghai before the war? - and surprises - Reggie's living proof that sexual experimentation was alive and well long before the sixties.

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My family was involved in running the British Empire in increasingly lowly postions sliding slowly down the social scale.
They felt quite dislocated after WW II and my mother led a very marginal existence.
Perhaps because of this she had me educated at St Paul's Girls' School, where I encountered a completely different world of the Jewish and non Jewish intelligentsia, and then at Oxford.
Possbily because of the discrepancy between home background and sophisticated educational milieu I was extremely rebellious.
I trained as a psychiatric social worker because of an interest in psychoanalysis, but throughout 10 years working in the field I was repelled by its conservative ethos and morality and eventually escaped to a polytechnic.
But this time I was involved in Gay Liberation and the Women's Movement, which defined the 1970s for me.
In the 1980s I became a lesbian co-parent and later a parent governor at Camden School for Girls.
Beginning in the mid-70s I wrote a number of polemical/academic works about women, and then shifted into an interest in fashion and dress (I am currently Visiting Professor at the London College of Fashion, University of the Arts, London).
For some years I was a member of the Communist Party of Great Britain, but am now a Green Party member.
I am currently working on another novel and also on a book about the necessity of atheism.

[A] first class whodunit...The portrait of Austerity Britain is masterfully done...the most fascinating character in this impressive work is the exhausted capital itself.
Sunday Telegraph - Julia Handford

[Wilson] evokes louche, bohemian NW3 with skill and relish
Guardian - John O'Connell

The era of austerity after the Second World War makes an entertaining and convincing backdrop to Elizabeth Wilson's fine second novel, War Damage...A delight to read
The Times - Marcel Berlins

This book is as stylish as one would hope. An evocative, escapist tale of murder and secrecy in post-war London, War Damage paints a picture of a city that, way before the '60s (even in the rubble of the Blitz), was swinging
Grazia - Lauren Laverne

War Damage captures the murky, exhausted feel of post war London. Buildings and lives are being reconstructed and shady pasts covered over. The atmosphere of secrecy and claustrophobia is as thick as the swirling dust of recently bombed buildings. Wilson excels at a good story set in exquisite period detail
Jane Cholmeley

Cultural historian Elizabeth Wilson used post-second World War austerity Britain as the setting for a crime novel in her atmospheric The Twilight Hour (2006), set around bohemian Fitzrovia and Brighton in 1947. In this loose sequel, she again brilliantly evokes that bleak world of bomb sites and food shortages...Wilson presents a nation struggling to get back on its feet, but she does not overdo the period detail...Regine is an idiosyncratic, vivid protagonist
Observer - Peter Guttridge

[A] sleek and vivid period piece
Gay Times

War Damage is a superb historical thriller, as thick with ideas, observations and atmosphere as the London fogs it so eloquently describes
Shots Ezine - Mike Ripley

Fantastically atmospheric... with the sort of breathy dialogue that reminds you of Brief Encounter
Sunday Express

An elegantly nostalgic, noir thriller; brilliantly conjures up the rackety confusion of Cold War London
Daily Mail

Brilliantly captures the great city trying to come back to life after the privations of the war.
Good Book Guide - N/A

C format original
Keyword Index
Gay men - Crimes against - Fiction.|London (England) - Social conditions - 20th century - Fiction.|Suspense fiction.
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Number of Pages

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