At the Jerusalem, Paul Bailey
Paul Bailey

At the Jerusalem

161 printed pages

'A very funny book, but never jeering, full of pity, but unsentimentally harsh with the tragedy of old age which institutional kindness cannot cushion' Financial Times.
Following the death from leukaemia of her daughter, Celia, Mrs Gadny goes to live with her sullen stepson Henry. But she finds little affection or contentment either with him, or with his selfish wife Thelma, or with their ungrateful children. She is sent to an old people's home, 'The Jerusalem', a converted workhouse, green-and-white-tiled. Mrs Gadny is repulsed and humiliated by the home and its inmates: women like acid-tongued Miss Trimmer, the vulgar toothless Mrs Affery, and Mrs O'Blath with her hysterical laughter. Retreating from the kindness offered her by the nurses and the friendly Mrs Capes, she withdraws into her memories, but even their fragmented recollection provides small comfort. Mrs Gadny's only escape from 'The Jerusalem' lies in her own crumbling consciousness.
Paul Bailey is sensitive to the exact nuance of conversation, the precise detail that can create an environment or a mood, and draw the reader into it. His book is an exquisitely defined miniature whose impression will not easily be forgotten.
With an introduction by Colm Tóibín.

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77has quoted2 days ago
How could she, scarcely more than a bean-pole, suffer all that weight?’


Zeyneb Kareche
Zeyneb Karechehas quoted3 months ago
‘Why be gloomy? A question we should all ask ourselves. Every morning when we rise; every night before sleeping. That’s one of my beliefs.’
Касьянова Варвара
Касьянова Варвараhas quoted3 months ago
People you know, yet can’t quite name, each looms

Люди, которых вы знаете, но не можете назвать, каждый из них вырисовывается

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