In the story of Lev, newly arrived in London from Eastern Europe, Rose Tremain has written a wise and witty book about the contemporary migrant experience.
On the coach, Lev chose a seat near the back and he sat huddled against the window, staring out at the land he was leaving. . . . Lev is on his way to Britain to seek work, so that he can send money back to Eastern Europe to support his mother and little daughter.
Readers will become totally involved with his story, as he struggles with the mysterious rituals of “Englishness,” and the fashions and fads of the London scene. We see the road Lev travels through Lev’s eyes, and we share his dilemmas: the intimacy of his friendships, old and new; his joys and sufferings; his aspirations and his hopes of finding his way home, wherever home may be.