London Road: Linked Stories, Vol. 1 by Tessa Smith McGovern is more than a collection of short stories; it is a collection of stories about a group of women. Their lives are linked by the boarding house in London where they live and Nora, the woman who owns it.
The collection starts with Janice being released from prison. She arrives at the boarding house and is greeted by the landlady Nora. Nora is kind and supportive but lives in her own fantasy and writes romance novels. She is also obsessed with the Queen. Distracted by other things, she completely forgets to collect her daughter, Anna, from netball.
Mandy is on probation after being caught for shoplifting. She is tempted to go back to her old ways.
Bitty, is waiting in a restaurant for her boyfriend, expecting him to break up with her. Her roommate, Isobel, is having psychological problems as well as a difficult relationship with her mother who is an unsuccessful actress.
My summary of the characters makes the book sound a bit disjointed but the way Tessa Smith McGovern writes the stories they move smoothly from one to the next. Despite the brevity, the reader becomes intimately drawn into their lives. So much so that at times I felt I was eavesdropping on a private conversation or even spying on a person’s private struggle.
I would love to see a follow up book with these characters and discover how they cope with their inner demons and troubled relationships.
I received this book in exchanged for an honest review.
Thoroughly enjoyable, I give London Road 4*
This review is also available on my website www.pam.id.au