The evening that brought the moment of highest romance to the lives of two young English girls of the working class. Very well done, the happenings of a single evening, but shown as the result of many things skillfully suggested with a feeling of the consequences to follow. Foreword by H. G. Wells
dway, thought she could see as its cause a small girl pushing a perambulator loaded with bundles of washing. Her first impulse was pity--"Poor little thing"; but the words were hardly in her mind before they were chased away by a faint indignation at the child for getting in the tram's way. Everybody ought to look where they were going. Ev-ry bo-dy ought to look where they were go-ing, said the pitching tramcar. Ev-ry bo-dy.... Oh, sickening! Jenny looked at her neighbour's paper--her refuge. "Striking speech," she read. Whose? What did it matter? Talk, talk.... Why didn't they do something? What were they to do? The tram pitched to the refrain of a comic song: "Actions speak louder than words!" That kid who was wheeling the perambulator full of washing.... Jenny's attention drifted away like the speech of one who yawns, and she looked again at her reflection. The girl in the sliding glass wouldn't say much. She'd think the more. She'd say, when Sir Herbert pressed for his answer, "My thoughts are my own, Sir
This short novel covers an evening in the life of two working-class sisters, the volatile, restless Jenny and the older and more domesticated Emmy, both together and with their respective paramours. It's an interesting study of their relationships, the differences between them, and a reflection on the differences between men and women and their approach to love. Swinnerton's prose is exquisite, but the novel starts slowly, and the slice of life nature of it makes it somewhat unsatisfying. You're left wondering what will happen next.
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