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The Clothes on Their Backs

The Clothes on Their Backs

In a red brick mansion block off the Marylebone Road, Vivien, a sensitive, bookish girl grows up sealed off from both past and present by her timid refugee parents. Through Vivien we discover the colourful characters at Benson Court, who play a part in the development of this at first, timid and unworldly young woman. Then, one morning, a glamorous older man appears, dressed in a mohair suit, with a diamond watch on his wrist and a girl in a leopard-skin hat on his arm. He is her Uncle Sándor but why, is he so violently unwelcome in her parents’ home?

The Clothes On Their Backs

About the Author

Linda Grant

Linda Grant was born in Liverpool in 1951. She was educated at Belvedere School GPDST, read English at the University of York, did an MA at McMaster University, Ontario, Canada and further graduate studies at Simon Fraser University, B.C. 

Her first novel, The Cast Iron Shore, published in 1996, won the David Higham Award and was shortlisted for the Guardian Fiction Prize. Her second novel,  When I Lived in Modern Times, set in Tel Aviv in the last years of the British mandate, published in March 2000, won the Orange Prize for Fiction and was shortlisted for the Encore Prize and the Jewish Quarterly Prize. Her novel, Still Here, published in 2002, was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. Her non-fiction work, The People On The Street: A Writer’s View of Israel, published in 2006, won the Lettre Ulysses Prize for Literary Reportage. Her 2008 Man Booker Prize shortlisted novel, The Clothes On Their Backs, also won the South Bank Show award. Her latest novel We Had It So Good was published by Virago in January 2011.

She is a patron of the National Academy of Writing, a member of the management committee of the Society of Authors and a member of the Advisory panel of the MA in Creative Writing at Middlesex University.

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