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Synopsis

Introduced by Gordon Jarvie. Distinguished by irony, compassion and the author’s own dry wit, these three novels paint a memorable picture of life in the streets, schools and tenements of Glasgow in the 1950s and 60s. With a unique vision of loneliness, old age, sexual longing, hot young blood and youth’s casual cruelty, George Friel’s books explore a dark comedy of tangled communication, human need and fading community. All these elements come together in the humorous parable of greed, religion and slum youth that is The Boy Who Wanted Peace; in the fate of old and disturbed Miss Partridge who is obsessed with the innocence of young Grace; and in the mental collapse of Mr Alfred, a middle-aged school teacher who is in love with one of his pupils. The humour, realism and moral concern of Friel’s work clearly anticipate and stand alongside the novels of Alan Spence, Alasdair Gray, William McIlvanney and James Kelman. ‘George Friel is a talented and, I think, original novelist.’ Anthony Burgess, Spectator ‘A compassionate realist.’ Scotsman ‘A singular talent.’ Scotland on Sunday

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