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Book set in the late 70s/80s

(35 Posts)
Caroian Sat 28-Jan-17 14:03:11

I'm looking for recommendations of books set in the late 1970s or early 1980s. It is a period that I love reading about partly, and simply, because it reminds me of my childhood, but also because I like looking at things from an adult perspective set at a time where I was still lost in childhood innocence, if that makes sense!

I've particularly enjoyed authors such as Isabel Ashdown, Esther Freud and Maggie O'Farrell in recent years... other authors or specific books to try?

eddiemairswife Sat 28-Jan-17 14:21:19

Margaret Drabble.....not the earlier ones, they are set in the 1960s.

highlandcoo Sat 28-Jan-17 14:40:01

The Rotters' Club by Jonathan Coe, followed by The Closed Circle. Captures what it was like as a teenager in the 70s (my era so I'm a bit older than you OP!)

What A Carve Up! by the same author is an excellent political satire.

Also, The Northern Clemency by Philip Hensher , set in Sheffield during the Thatcher years, tells the story of ordinary families against the background of the miners' strike.

BreconBeBuggered Sat 28-Jan-17 14:49:17

YY to Jonathan Coe. Also: Early Adrian Mole is in the right time zone.

venusinscorpio Sat 28-Jan-17 14:50:12

Jilly Cooper's Riders, Rivals and Polo.

MumBod Sat 28-Jan-17 14:53:55

Black Swan Green by David Mitchell.

YorkiePudster Sat 28-Jan-17 14:59:06

Beaten to it, but definitely Black Swan Green - so so evocative of early 80s and very believable honest dialogue. Fab book!

unflinchingasaphotograph Sat 28-Jan-17 15:01:12

Starter for Ten (David Nicholls)
Junk by Melvin burgess is set in the 80s
Adrian Mole? smile

Caroian Sat 28-Jan-17 15:06:16

I knew this group would deliver! Adrian Mole definitely covers the right time zone, but I've already read it from start to finish! Afraid I'm not a fan of Jilly Cooper, but will definitely check out the other suggestions.

BreconBeBuggered Sat 28-Jan-17 15:21:24

Getting It Right by Elizabeth Jane Howard might interest you.

venusinscorpio Sat 28-Jan-17 15:24:12

Your loss OP wink I read them all in the early 90s so double nostalgia hit for me!

ifigoup Sat 28-Jan-17 15:26:00

Any of the Ruth Rendells written during that time. Her social history is always really, really well-observed.

YakiUdonYumYum Sat 28-Jan-17 15:30:54

I came on to say Philip Hensher too, great book.

David Mitchell's The Bone Clocks start in the 80s (and then moves on throughout the story).

Caroian Sat 28-Jan-17 15:57:03

I must admit I don't know how I've missed Philip Hensher! Some of his other titles look really good too, so a couple now on my TBR list.

I haven't read any Ruth Rendell in a long time, so should revisit. I actually haven't read an Elizabeth Jane Howard at all - I've heard mixed reviews but might give that one a go.

ThereAreNoGhostsHere Sat 28-Jan-17 16:31:11

The Trouble With Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon is set in the 1970s. I really enjoyed it. It's well written and a good story. Seconding Black Swan Green by David Mitchell. V evocative of 1970s. You may also like Jubilee by Shelley Harris, set in 1977 during a street party for the Queen's jubilee.

ThereAreNoGhostsHere Sat 28-Jan-17 16:32:14

Meant 80s for Black Swan Green blush.

SatsukiKusakabe Sun 29-Jan-17 06:12:14

I came on to say Black Swan Green, too. Like a more serious Adrian Mole.

tormentil Mon 30-Jan-17 19:49:04

Yes yes to Jubilee by Shelley Harris. Definitely captures the era - I was 12 in 1977.

Suzietwo Sun 12-Feb-17 21:56:22

Money, amis

Limerish Sun 12-Feb-17 22:07:40

Tales of the City by Amistead Maupin - it's American but wonderfully atmospheric of the era. The original 5/6 books span 1970's and 1980's. It's a proper soap opera of characters.

DressageNut Mon 13-Feb-17 13:14:09

I'd second The Northern Clemency - I really enjoyed it.

Deathraystare Tue 14-Feb-17 15:41:11

mm! Second the Tales of the City - I also saw it on tv. It was great! Read the whole lot.

SilenceIsBroken Tue 14-Feb-17 15:44:48

Also thought of Black Swan Green when I saw the title. It's so evocative of the time, and so funny and real.

Tales of the City looks great! Will check that out.

Kai1977 Wed 15-Feb-17 16:00:15

My Name is Leon is set in the 1980s and parts if Zadie Smith's Swing Time are as well, really took me back to my childhood with all the references!

Yes to Joanna Cannon's book as well.

Kai1977 Wed 15-Feb-17 16:03:54

Oh and Anita and Me by Meera Syal. It's told from the POV of a girl but there's a big focus on adults.

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