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Stanley Middleton

Novelist; Contemporary Fiction

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Stanley Middleton

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1982. Blind Understanding



Middleton, Stanley. 'Blind Understanding', first published in 1982 in Great Britain in hardback with dustjacket, 160pp, ISBN 0091469902. Condition: Good, ex-library condition, quite well looked-after with some mild tanning to internal pages and the odd library mark
1982, Hutchinson, hbk
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  • Blind Understanding [top]
    First published in 1982 in Great Britain by Hutchinson in hardback with dustjacket, 160pp, ISBN 0091469902. Jacket illustration and design by Salim Patell. Original UK retail price when first published: £7.50 net. Dedicated to Wil Sanders

Storyline/synopsis: The day in the life of John Bainbridge starts with the funeral of an acquaintance followed by a chance meeting with a former mistress. The two events prompt a day-long succession o apparently random memories but nothing in a novel by Booker prize-winner Stanley Middleton is really random, and unanswered questions lie behind Bainbridge's remembrance of the past. What shape has there been in his life? What has been its purpose? What its achievement? Seventy years old, John Bainbridge is a retired solicitor in a provincial town, a man with a formidable reputation who, for all his successful business dealings and persistent philandering, has brusquely kept himself to himself, doing only what he wanted to do. He and his uncle married sisters, daughters of a bishop. When his wife was pregnant, John had seduced his aunt/sister-in-law and might perhaps have fathered his uncle's son. Now in their old age, John Bainbridge and his two sisters have come to terms with life and, to an extent, with each other. 'He had lived adequately.' Can any of them say more?

Characters:
John Bainbridge (J. R. Bainbridge)
The late Bill Ashburton
Sally Ashburton
Christopher Price-Jones
Cynthia Snell
Thomas Ronald Bainbridge
Betty Lavinia Bainbridge, Diana's sister
Frederick Henry Bainbridge
John Trevor Cayley Bainbridge, Bainbridge's eldest son
Tom Swindell
Albert Swindell
Marjorie Read ("Marge")
Iris Cowley
Elaine Crich
The Reverend T. Simpson Green

 

 



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