Rosie Hogarth is about one such little hive in the years immediately after the Second World War. Lamb Street is a respectable, inward looking working class enclave in south Islington, close to the Angel & to Chapel Market. The novel stands out for its profound sense of place. But alongside the warmth of community is the chill of exclusion.

The ‘man or woman who tries to settle in London without gaining admission to one of these communities’, Baron writes … More

This is London’s East End in the 1940s – polyglot, violent, poor. We visit ‘the local’, the blitz & an all-day wedding feast. A vibrant area, but for Jimmy despair awaits when even his father steals from him. And how will Pinkie get on in these changing times? London E1 is introduced by Rachel Lichtenstien.

On the back cover of the first edition of Robert Poole’s long-forgotten first, and only, published novel, London E1 (Secker … More

What a fine thing capital punishment is! Dead men never repent; dead men never bring awkward stories to light. The prospect of the gallows, too, makes them hardy & bold. Ah, it’s a fine thing for the trade! Five of them strung up in a row, & none left to play booty or turn white-livered!

Died #OTD 1870, Charles Dickens. Starved and mistreated, empty bowl in hand, the young hero musters the courage to approach … More