Liza of Lambeth

Published: 1897
Language: English
Wordcount: 38,638 / 110 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 92.4
LoC Category: PR
Downloads: 3,058
Added to site: 2005.08.13 11411

"An interesting story of life and character in the Surrey-side slums, presented with a great deal of sympathetic humour."--Daily Chronicle.

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It was Liza who spoke next.

'There's some new people moved in the street. 'Ave you seen 'em?' she asked.

'No, wot are they?'

'I dunno; I've seen a chap, a big chap with a beard. I think 'e lives up at the other end.'

She felt herself blushing a little.

'No one any good you be sure,' said Mrs. Kemp. 'I can't swaller these new people as are comin' in; the street ain't wot it was when I fust come.'

When they had done, Mrs. Kemp got up, and having finished her half-pint of beer, said to her daughter:

'Put the things awy, Liza. I'm just goin' round to see Mrs. Clayton; she's just 'ad twins, and she 'ad nine before these come. It's a pity the Lord don't see fit ter tike some on 'em--thet's wot I say.'

After which pious remark Mrs. Kemp went out of the house and turned into another a few doors up.

Liza did not clear the supper things away as she was told, but opened the window and drew her chair to it. She leant on the sill, looking out into


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Average Rating of 3.5 from 2 reviews: ****
Sardo Weems

A good telling of a brief life in the slums. Maugham's second book. All the dialogue is in a Cockney dialect, all the descriptive passages are written in plain, sometimes elegant English. There is a lot of drinking, fighting, and self-pity; the characters are well-drawn, the plotting leisurely, but tight.

There are no car chases, assassins, or blatant sex scenes, so a modern reader will find little to interest him.

Paul Hatton

This is the first of Somerset Maugham's novels I have (tried) to read. Apparently a tale of life for a young girl in Lambeth. Sadly I found the after 20 or so pages I was bored and waiting for something to happen.... anything. At that point I gave up with the tale. Should this be typical of the author, don't think I'd bother and am not sure why he is held is such reverence

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