An Awfully Big Adventure by Beryl Bainbridge
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.