From a childhood of gothic proportions in a vicarage on the Welsh borders, through adolescence, leaving herself teetering on the brink of the 1960s, Lorna Sage vividly and wittily brings to life a vanished time and place and illuminates the lives of three generations of women.
Lorna Sage’s memoir of childhood and adolescence is a brilliantly written bravura piece of work, which vividly and wickedly brings to life her eccentric family and somewhat bizarre upbringing in the small town of Hanmer, on the border between Wales and Shropshire.
The period as well as the place is evoked with crystal clarity: from the 1940s, dominated for Lorna by her dissolute but charismatic vicar grandfather, through the 1950s, where the invention of fish fingers revolutionised the lives of housewives like Lorna’s mother, to the brink of the 1960s, where the community was shocked by Lorna’s pregnancy at 16, an event which her grandmother blamed on ‘the fiendish invention of sex’.
Bad Blood is often extremely funny, and is at the same time a deeply intelligent insight by a unique literary stylist into the effect on three generations of women of their environment and their relationships.
This book had a strong start and I was looking forward to a good read about the author's childhood and how she dealt with dysfunctional family. What I got instead was more philosophy and stream of conscience.
To call this a memoir is doing a disservice to the word. Rather then detailing day to day events the author seemed to spend most of the book talking about her childhood in nebulous streams of thought. The later part of the book made me wonder if it been added just to ride the #MeToo bandwagon but the book was published several years ago.
Found this a bit depressing and hard to read but it does pick up and I enjoyed the last third of book .