LMA Book Group is a monthly reading group exploring a range of London writing, with a remit covering fiction and non-fiction from all periods in London history
October's read is by Jean Rhys - Voyage in the Dark
This event is free, but please register using the button above to ensure your place.
“I didn’t like England at first. I couldn’t get used to the cold. Sometimes I would shut my eyes and pretend that the heat of the fire, or the bed-clothes drawn up round me, was sun-heat; or I would pretend I was standing outside the house at home, looking down Market Street to the Bay…Sometimes it was as if I were back there and as if England were a dream. At other times England was the real thing and out there was the dream, but I could never fit them together.”
Set in the 1930s, Voyage in the Dark is the story of Anna Morgan, a young woman who comes to London from her home in Caribbean after a family tragedy. Morgan tries to survive in a hostile and alien London which is continually contrasted with the warmth and light of her home. Her life unravels in this short, sad novel that describes a devastating love affair and explores the idea of exile in Rhys’s simple, haunting style. Rhys eventually found fame with “Wide Sargasso Sea”, but this earlier novel provides a powerful portrait of the loneliness of urban life.
The image above shows a woman browsing through books on Charing Cross Road in 1930.
You see this image in much greater detail on Collage: the London Picture Archive.
[Reference: Collage 128801]