It is 1938 and the prospect of war hangs over every London inhabitant. But the city doesn't stop. Everywhere people continue to work, drink, fall in love, fight and struggle to get on in life. At the lodging-house at No.10 Dulcimer Street, Kennington, the buttoned-up clerk Mr. Josser returns home with the clock he has received as a retirement gift. The other residents include faded actress Connie; tinned food-loving Mr. Puddy; widowed landlady Mrs. Vizzard (whose head is turned by her new lodger, a self-styled 'Professor of Spiritualism'); and flashy young mechanic Percy Boon, whose foray into stolen cars descends into something much, much worse.
Norman Collins was born in 1907. He was a British writer, and later a radio and television executive, who became one of the major figures behind the establishment of the Independent Television (ITV) network in the UK. In all Norman Collins wrote 16 novels and two plays. Ed Glinert read Classical Hebrew at Manchester University and in 1983 founded the city's listings magazine, City Life, which he edited until 1989. The following decade he was local government correspondent for Private Eye magazine. He has since written a variety of books, including The London Compendium and East End Chronicles, both for Penguin, as well as editing the Sherlock Holmes stories and the Gilbert & Sullivan libretti for Penguin Classics.
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