The sequel to the bestselling Silvertown, which tells the story of Aunt Daisy, and all the other Aunt Daisys -- the locals of the old East End. For more than a century, hopping was the main event in the East End calendar -- an annual expedition of over 200,000 East Enders out to the Kentish countryside to look for casual work picking hops and stripping bines. Aunt Daisy was one of those day trippers. For her, the train ride from London Bridge to Faversham was a kind of magic that she always passed in a rush of sensation. To be away from the tight hustle of the city and lose herself in the open spaces and pollen mists of the Kentish summer provided her with a succour that would last her through the long winters back in London. Her delicate demeanour had never really suited the smutty terraces of the East End; rather she considered herself a countrywoman who just so happened to be stranded in the city. Married young and yet not unhappily to Harold Baker, a closet homosexual who would never consummate their union, at some early point she wrote an escape clause into her life that shielded her from her life's difficult realities. It was this resolve, a kind of armour born out by her dreamy nature, that more than anything else marked Aunt Daisy out as an East Ender. Thoughtful, moving and beautifully rendered, Hopping captures the essence of ordinary family lives often obscured from history during an extraordinary period in London's past. Regardless of era or circumstance, chartering the shift of the East End from a hive of poverty whose dimmed population toiled daily at the docks, to a Blitzed-out community that defiantly rose to confront the brutalities of World War II, through to the gamble and risk emanating from behind the glass and steel towers of today's Canary Wharf, Hopping stands as testament to the true East Ender disposition - an agility of spirit to endure your lot and get by.
Why buy from World of Books
Our excellent value books literally don't cost the earth
Praise for Silvertown: 'McGrath tells her story in a novelist's idiom, and the result is extraordinarily powerful and curiously resonant. Like much of the East End, Silvertown today is in the process of an astonishing transformation. The curse on the area has been lifted. But McGrath has beautifully recorded the old Silvertown just before it disappears for ever.' Sinclair McKay, Daily Telegraph 'This is a remarkable account of the social history of the East End. It provides a rare bridge between those two separate Londons; for while the story belongs to a mysterious past, the style and sophistication is strikingly contemporary.' Anthony Sampson, Guardian Praise for The Long Exile: '[McGrath] offers a carefully imagined portrait of the appalling lives of the Inuit on Ellesmere Island. This is a story of official wrong-headedness and arrogance and McGrath relays it with compassion. The narrative is gripping.' Guardian 'Melanie McGrath's tragic tale has an icy ring of truth that wrings the heart.' The Times 'Melanie McGrath is a gifted, passionate and sensitive story-teller and through her the authentic voice of the Arctic, not the clarion call of great white explorers, rings loud and clear. She gets right under the Inuit's seal-skin parkas; her research is meticulous, her touch is light, her understanding and invisibility are the absolute opposite of the years of foreign domination. Her play with language is disarming and original. Fresh, illuminating and heartbreaking history.' Sunday Telegraph 'Poignant and humane book. McGrath, who tracked down some of the survivors as well as traveling in the territory, tells an impressively researched and often poetic story.' Observer 'McGrath also has a wonderful feel for landscape and so the Arctic itself assumes the life of a character.The language is lovely. Modulated, lyrical and beautiful as the stark nature it describes, it makes McGrath's book more than a fascinating and instructive read. It makes it a joyful one.' Evening Standard
About Melanie McGrath
Melanie McGrath is the author of four previous books, 'Motel Nirvana', 'Hard, Soft & Wet', 'Silvertown' and 'The Long Exile'. She is a regular contributor for the Guardian, Independent and the Express. She lives in London.
Hopping by Melanie McGrath
Used - Very Good
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.