Something Happened Yesterday

Irreproachably wry and surprisingly hedonistic, 64-year-old novelist Beryl Bainbridge wrote an English newspaper column in the late ’80s and early ’90s, which she concocted by conjuring up ”memories of long-gone times and sticking London in the middle.” The various chatty tales in Something Happened Yesterday range from rote to revealing. She documents her arrival in the city at 16: living in various bedsits, working at a cinema, and politely having sex because ”it was rude to say no.” She also takes her grandkids to the planetarium (and daydreams about an intravenous whiskey drip to enhance the show), sculpts a statue of Peter Pan author James M. Barrie, and tends to her garden. This collection — eclectic as well as amusing — is a bit like taking a spot of tea at the Mad Hatter’s party. B

Something Happened Yesterday
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