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Craig Brown

July 2016

'RC Sherriff is best known for his deeply moving play Journey’s End, set in the trenches of the First World War, but he was also a wonderful novelist, at his best when dealing with the inner lives of everyday people. The Fortnight In September, written in 1931 and now republished in a lovely edition, is about the Stevens family – father, mother, teenage son and daughter – leaving the London suburbs for their annual holiday in a seaside boarding house. At first, I thought it was going to be comical and slightly sneery, in the tradition of The Diary Of A Nobody, but far from it: it is humane, tense and deeply moving, a little miracle of a book, and one that is bound to ring all sorts of bells for anyone who has ever been on a family holiday.'

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