The restrictions of a wartime childhood in in London and subsequent post-war shortages have done little to enrich Timothy's early youth. But everything changes when his glamorous older sister, Kath, invites him to spend the summer at Heidelberg. Kath, who left home long ago to work for the American army, introduces her sixteen-year-old brother to ...
The restrictions of a wartime childhood in in London and subsequent post-war shortages have done little to enrich Timothy's early youth. But everything changes when his glamorous older sister, Kath, invites him to spend the summer at Heidelberg. Kath, who left home long ago to work for the American army, introduces her sixteen-year-old brother to a lifestyle that is deliriously fast, furious and extravagant. Dazzled by the indulgent habits of the American forces, but at the same time sensitive to the broken spirits of the German community beneath this sparkling surface, Timothy will find that his summer holiday is in more ways than one an unforgettable rite of passage.
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Publishers Weekly, 1989-07-14 In the first American edition of an atmospheric, often comic, semi-autobiographical novel, Lodge ( Nice Work ) adroitly limns the maturation of Londoner Timothy Young. During WW II, his family passes most nights in the air-raid shelter in his friend Jill's garden. After a bomb kills Jill and her mother, Tim and his mother are evacuated to the country, but soon return to London where, making his First Confession, Tim is wracked with guilt for concealing that he and Jill had touched each other's genitals. Terrified of Hitler, Tim has nightmares after seeing what was ``supposed to be a funny film'' about him-- The Great Dictator . Even after the war, goods are scarce and food still rationed. Later, when Tim is 16, his older sister, Kath, who works for the U.S. Army in Germany, suggests that Tim spend the summer with her. Away from his claustrophobic and puritanical working-class home, Tim is initiated into adulthood; he comes to terms with his own and Kath's sexuality, and his abject fear of the Nazis is conveniently alleviated by a meeting with an ex-Nazi who proves to be a gentle, melancholy old man. (Aug.)
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