Picador £7.99 (339pp) from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
Nourishment, By Gerard Woodward
Friday 29 July 2011
Woodward's black comedy looks at some of the more carnal pleasures to be had in wartime Britain. Tory Pace is sitting out the Blitz when she receives a missive from her POW husband asking that she writes a dirty letter: "I mean really filthy, full of all the dirtiest words and deed you can thing of".
At first Tory's attempts fall a little limp ("did 'womb' count as an erotic word?"), but she soon gets into the swing of things when she finds herself involved in a passionate affair with an ex-boxer.
Further awakenings follow, including an inadvertent act of cannibalism after the bombing of a local butcher's shop: "You have only become a proper woman since the day you ate Mr Dando."
As ever, Woodward's fiction crackles with both laugh-out-loud silliness and sharp observation.
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Review: Cilla, ITV TV
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