"To be brought up in Leeds in the forties was to learn early on the quite useful lesson that life is generally something that happens elsewhere."
In this delightful collection of reminiscences Alan Bennett recalls his early years in a sequence of tales that are funny, touching and written in his unique style.
Born in Leeds in 1934, he realises from a young age that his family is not like other families. When war breaks out in 1939, the Bennett family is on a tram heading down Tong Road as Neville Chamberlain addresses the nation. 'So, not quite partaking in the national mood and, as ever, unbrushed by the wings of history.'
The precocious Alan yearns to see the places and lead the life he reads about in books, but not even the war provides the excitement he longs for. This is an ordinary childhood - hiking in the Dales on Sundays, trips into town with Mam - recalled with wry observation and ironic understatement, which is by turns moving and hilarious.
These beautifully rendered snapshots, which include poignant portraits of his parents, confirm Bennett at the forefront of contemporary writing. Presented here as a new edition, Telling Tales will delight Bennett fans and enchant a new generation of readers.
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