A Cupboard Full of Coats, By Yvette Edwards

Family tale, with spice, makes for an impressive debut

Lesley McDowell
Saturday 22 October 2011 08:44 BST

Edwards' debut is almost a traditional mother-daughter tale, given extra spice by the presence of a Caribbean father-figure, Lemon, whom the younger Jinx inappropriately desires.

Her mother has been killed by her violent lover many years before, but Jinx blames herself for not protecting her enough, for possibly putting her mother in harm's way. Only when Lemon turns up on her doorstep, seeking reparation for the part he played in the tragedy, does Jinx fully understand what happened. Edwards has an appealing voice, and one that's much more commercially viable than I suspect some publishers might believe. There are some beginner's mistakes, with a little redundancy here and there, but that aside, this is a writer to watch.

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