The Idle Years - Louis de Bernieres - 21 August 2008





                                                                                               Louis de Bernieres




I finished “The Idle Years” yesterday, and did enjoy it very much. It gave a very good snapshot of what social and economic conditions were like at the time, and reminded me of some of John Steinbeck’s stories about poor but optimistic people trying to improvise a living. The characterisation is very memorable, but not as exaggerated as in Dickens, with whom Orhan Kemal has been compared. I think it reads more like a memoir than a novel, to be honest, but it made me want to read more of  Orhan Kemal’s work, and it is not a book I am likely to forget.