An Awfully Big Adventure, Paperback
3 out of 5 (4 ratings)


It is 1950 and the Liverpool reporatory theatre company is rehearsing its Christmas production of Peter Pan, a story of childhood innocence and loss.

Stella has been taken on as assistant stage manager and quickly becomes obsessed with Meredith, the dissolute director.

But it is only when the celebrated O'Hara arrives to take the lead, that a different drama unfolds.

In it, he and Stella are bound together in a past that neither dares to interpret.




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Showing 1 - 4 of 4 reviews.

Review by

Set in the 1950’s this is the story of Stella as she becomes part of a theatre group She lives with her aunt and uncle in a boarding house, and throughout the book there are hints about her disreputable mother, but until the end we never really discover what happened her.I found this a strange book to get stuck into. The characters are distant, and Stella herself is, well weird. The story itself is told in well-crafted sentences, but they are brief, and despite the flickers of humour I never really enjoyed it until the very end.And it is the ending that made me want to reread the book, but I’ll wait a while yet, because I am sure there were quite a few subtle hints that I never picked up on because of my lack of attention and interest.

Review by

Quite a twist in the tail. Being from the 'pool I knew all the locations in this excellent novel.

Review by

Dull as powder until the last chapter. Stella has got to be one of the most annoying teenagers ever written. Good grief! Surely the movie with Alan Rickman is better than this...or maybe it's worse...

Review by

Having heard much about Beryl Bainbridge after her passing the previous year (2010), I looked for some of her work. <br/>Set in 50's, so took some work to feel part of that time. Easy to read, but complex themes and undercurrents. I can see why she has gotten such acclaim as one of best authors. As I read it seemed to call out for a movie version - which I discovered was done in 1995 - with Hugh Grant and few other now-known names. <br/>An ending that I did NOT anticipate. Glad I didn't read ahead as I often do.<br/>Now I'll have to find the movie.<br/>Read in 2011

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