I am up to 1976 in my quest to read all the Booker Prize winners.
This is not a book I would ever have chosen to read, but I’m glad I did. It is the story of one young man’s efforts to ‘better himself,’ largely to the pressure put upon him by his father, a miner, who wants something else for his son. The result is a young man who is not at home in his world.
The novel is very much about class. The protagonist cannot be content in his father’s world of working in a mine, living in housing provided for him and his family. But he is not at home in the middle class, either. The world of teaching is wrong for him; the world of physical labor is closed to him. As a result, he a restless spirit doomed to be unhappy wherever he is.
I think he should move to America.