Michael Jarvie's Reviews > Common People: An Anthology of Working-Class Writers

Common People by Kit de Waal
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I have monitored the progress of this book since its inception with some interest. In fact I had hoped to be able to submit some of my own life writing for inclusion, but was prevented from doing so by the gatekeepers at New Writing North. As a working-class writer, being rejected is my default position. Unbound are therefore only one in a long line of publishers who have turned down my work.
What you should know is that this collection is heavily weighted towards female writers: 23 out of 34 to be precise. However, in terms of the quality of the writing on display it’s a considerably more accomplished product than the earlier book “Know Your Place”.
The variety on offer is particularly satisfying and any self-respecting working-class reader or writer should add it to their collection. What comes across time and again in these splendid essays and memoirs is a vivid sense of place.
The cynic in me does wonder whether this is simply an example of the middle-class publishing industry flagellating itself as a public relations exercise. Nevertheless, I have this book to thank, since in June of this year I decided to self-publish my own collection of working-class life writing, so it would be fair to say that “Common People” has been quite an inspiration and driving force in that respect.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
June 19, 2019 – Shelved
June 19, 2019 – Finished Reading

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