Human Voices

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HarperCollins Publishers, Mar 7, 2013 - Fiction - 208 pages

From the Booker Prize-winning author of ‘Offshore’, ‘The Blue Flower’ and ‘Innocence’, this is a funny, touching, authentic story of life at Broadcasting House during the Blitz.

The human voices of Penelope Fitzgerald’s novel are those of the BBC in the first years of the World War II, the time when the Concert Hall was turned into a dormitory for both sexes, the whole building became a target for enemy bombers, and in the BBC – as elsewhere – some had to fail and some had to die.

It does not pretend to be an accurate history of Broadcasting House in those years, but ‘one is left with the sensation’, as William Boyd said, reviewing it in the ‘London Magazine’, ‘that this is what it was really like.’

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User Review  - Eyejaybee -

During the 1980s, Penelope Fitzgerald became a (or should that be ‘an’?) habituée of the Booker Prize shortlist, after having won with her third novel, Offshore, in 1979. She was, however, rather a ... Read full review

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User Review  - eglinton - LibraryThing

Fitzgerald’s trademark well-written prose: measured, concise, lucid, and a little arch. The BBC, in its hulking Portland Place bulwark, takes on the challenges of War. Not yet 2 decades old, in 1940 ... Read full review

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About the author (2013)

Penelope Fitzgerald was the author of nine novels, three of which – The Bookshop, The Beginning of Spring and The Gate of Angels – were shortlisted for the Booker. She won the prize in 1979 for Offshore. A superb biographer and critic, she was also the author of lives of the artist Burne-Jones, the poet Charlotte Mew and The Knox Brothers, a study of her remarkable family.
She died in 2000.

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