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Middle England

by Jonathan Coe

Relationship Stories The Real World

Middle England Synopsis

The country is changing and, up and down the land, cracks are appearing - within families and between generations. In the Midlands Benjamin Trotter tries to help his aged father navigate a Britain that seems to have forgotten he exists, while in London his friend Doug doesn't understand why his teenage daughter is eternally enraged. Meanwhile, newlyweds Sophie and Ian can find nothing to agree on except the fact that their marriage is on the rocks . . .

Middle England Press Reviews

This book is sublimely good. State of the (Brexit) nation novel to end them all, but also funny, tender, generous, so human and intelligent about age and love as well as politics -- India Knight Coe can make you smile, sigh, laugh; he has abundant sympathy for his characters - Scotsman

From post-industrial Birmingham to the London riots and the current political gridlock, it takes in family, literature and love in a comedy for our times - Guardian

An astute, enlightened and enlightening journey into the heart of our current national identity crisis. Both moving and funny. As we'd expect from Coe -- Ben Elton Let me add to the chorus of praise for Jonathan Coe's new book Middle England. Easily my favourite of his since What a Carve Up! Which did for Thatcherism what Middle England does for Brexit -- John Crace Jonathan Coe's Middle England is brilliantly insightful on the times we are living in -- Mishal Husain, Books of the Year - Big Issue

This book is sublimely good. State of the (Brexit) nation novel to end them all, but also funny, tender, generous, so human and intelligent about age and love as well as politics -- India Knight The first great Brexit novel -- Sathnam Sanghera Coe's comic critique of a divided country dazzles . . . properly laugh-out-loud funny . . . it is also incisive and brilliant about our divided country and the deep chasms revealed by the vote to leave. Do not miss - The Bookseller

A copper bottomed masterpiece -- Barney Norris The great chronicler of Englishness - Independent

The beauty of Jonathan Coe's new novel, Middle England, is the way it tracks the seemingly unconnected moments that brought Britain to its knees - and with devastating delicacy, too -- Eva Wiseman - Observer

Coe is an extraordinarily deft plotter . . . he tackles big ambitious themes, in this case the effect of politics on people's lives, and political opinions on personal relations - Mail on Sunday

Middle England is a full-blooded state of the nation novel, and it brings us bang up-to-date - Sunday Times

Brilliant -- Nicola Sturgeon Very funny . . . Exceptionally good . . . Delightful -- BBC Radio 4 - Saturday Review

Sparkled with all the acuity of his best novels . . . Uproarious and always on-the-money -- Books of the Year - Evening Standard

Middle England takes all that is memorable and moving about Coe's body of work and throws it at the present emergency -- Alex Clark - TLS

Middle England combines top-class soap opera storytelling with melancholy insight into what it means to be English - Metro

Coe is as funny and tender as ever, restoring some humanity to the tumultuous societal backdrop - Grazia

This is a picture of England that comes from a place of compassion and understanding - inews

Millions of words have been and will be written on Brexit but few will get to the heart of why it is happening as incisively as Middle England -- John Boyne - Irish Times

Tackling his characters' opposing points of view, he draws a portrait of a recognisable Britain baffled by its loss of industry and jobs, and of everyday people shocked by a rise of acceptable racism and xenophobia. It's also very, very funny - Stylist

In Middle England, Coe shows an understanding of this country that goes beyond what most cabinet ministers can muster . . . he subtly builds a picture that exposes the cracks in society . . . he is a master of satire but pokes fun subtly, without ever being cruel, biting or blatant . . . his light, funny writing makes you feel better - Evening Standard

His affectionately witty attitude to our human foibles is always uplifting . . . Superb - The Times

A pertinent, entertaining study of a nation in crisis -- 'Books of the Year' - Financial Times

Expansive and often very funny . . . Coe - a writer of uncommon decency - reminds us that the way out of this mess is through moderation, through compromise, through that age-old English ability to laugh at ourselves - Observer

Brilliantly funny . . . a compelling state of the nation novel, full of light and shade, which vividly charts modern Britain's tragicomic slide - Economist

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780241983683
Publication date: 04/07/2019
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780241983683
Publication date: 4th July 2019
Author: Jonathan Coe
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 432 pages
Genres: Relationship Stories, The Real World,
Categories: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),

About Jonathan Coe

Jonathan Coe was born in Birmingham in 1961. Expo 58 is his tenth novel. The previous nine are all available in Penguin: The Accidental Woman, A Touch of Love, The Dwarves of Death, What a Carve Up! (which won the 1995 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize), The House of Sleep (which won the 1998 Prix Medicis Etranger), The Rotters' Club (winner of the Everyman Wodehouse Prize), The Closed Circle, The Rain Before It Falls and The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim. His biography of the novelist B.S. Johnson, Like a Fiery Elephant, won the 2005 Samuel Johnson Prize for best non-fiction book of the year.

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