What goes on behind closed doors? Follow four generations of one Hackney family on a roller-coaster ride of drugs, violence, sickness, infidelity and the redeeming joys of motherhood.
'I am waiting for the probable favourable outcome.'
Maureen is only trying to keep everyone out of trouble. But her family is all over the place: Alan hides the 'gear' he deals in their mum Nora's kitchen so she gets sent to Holloway, Nora can't stop giving Billy money with which he's only going to go and shoot up, Susan is pregnant and won't tell anyone who the father is, and meanwhile, Maureen is disastrously distracted by Terry, who's just come back into her life even though she's now married to Tony. What's more: Nora and Tom's golden wedding anniversary is coming up, and Linda is organising a big party in the community hall.
'Although it feels like there ain't no-one up there what gives a fuck about the likes of us.'
So it goes: Nora wins the lottery, Billy goes in rehab, and Victor, Nora's lodger, learns that not everybody in Chaucer Court is happy to believe he's as generous as it seems.
This is a multi-generational story through the lives of one family in Hackney-the east end of London where syringes, babies and expletives are shared freely. Refreshing the kitchen-sink genre and using studied local East London patois, Rose Boyt leads us through one family's sprawling, messy and fragile everyday life on an operatic scale. Hows Your Father is a new epic of the quotidian.
Rose Boyt was born and lives in London.
Faber Short Books
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