This Lovely City
London is recovering from the second world war. Jazz musician Lawrie Matthews is fresh off the Empire Windrush and eager to make the most of a new life in England. He's found lodgings, works as a postman by day and plays in Soho music halls by night, and he's fallen for the girl next door.
But it's clear the life he's forged for himself is precarious. One day Lawrie is in the wrong place at the wrong time. He tries to help a distressed woman who has made a terrible discovery. Instead of being rewarded for his kindness, he finds the blame is placed on him.
Hoping to clear his name, he finds secrets in the lives of members of the community are exposed, and relationships are challenged by these discoveries.
This is a powerful and compelling story which is full of atmosphere and engaging characters. But it is a troubling chain of events and this, at times, is uncomfortable and upsetting to read.
Yet it is ultimately a book of hope and affirmation, which instills a sense of belief in the human spirit and a determination that good will triumph.