The Hand-Reared Boy
By Brian Aldiss
The first British novel to frankly explore the sexual awakening of a young boy as he grows into adolescence, The Hand-Reared Boy uses wit and perception to describe the burgeoning sexuality of Horatio Stubbs as he learns that people are more than just sexual objects.
By Paul Bailey
In 1950s Camberwell, just outside of London, Ralph Hicks is working his way through a restrictive working-class background and his search for something better. Can he find love? Or will it break him to keep trying?
A Little of What You Fancy
By H.E. Bates
H.E. Bates' books about the Larkin family inspired a BBC series starring a young Catherine Zeta Jones. In A Little of What You Fancy, Pop Larkin, after having had rather too much of what he fancies, has a has a mild heart attack and is forced off booze, off good food and off the good life generally, much to his own and everyone else's horror and upset.
The Birds on the Trees
By Nina Bawden
When their eldest son Toby is expelled from school, the middle-class security of his parents—Maggie, a writer, and Charlie, a journalist—shatters. Is it drugs? Unhappiness? Veering between private agony and public cheerfulness, the novel reaches into the heart of relationship, raising fundamental questions about parents and their children.
A Place in England
By Melvyn Bragg
Joseph Tallentire has hope and ambition, and like his father before him, he is determined to make something of himself and improve his lot. But life is not easy for an uneducated young man in Cumberland before and during World War II. Suffering hardship and humiliation, the book tells the moving tale of one man's battle against the odds.
Down All the Days
By Christy Brown
From the author of My Left Foot comes a memoir of life as a young boy with cerebral palsy. His view from the red wagon, pulled by his boisterous brothers, grants him a unique perspective of the Dublin life in the '40s and '50s. Written with a fearless discipline over his own body, this memoir further displays Christy Brown's talent for lyrical language and insight.