Three Novels: Angel Pavement; Bright Day; Sir Michael & Sir George

Priestley, J. B.


Bright Day (1946): Disillusioned scriptwriter Gregory Dawson is holed up in a Cornish hotel writing a script he must finish. A chance encounter in the bar sends him back in time to the doomed world of his youth before the slaughter of The First World War. Caught in his own past Dawson recounts his time within the closeknit Yorkshire community in which he came of age and the magic circle of the Alington family, in whose company he spent his happiest days. As this forgotten time takes on a new shape he slowly realises that to have any chance of a bright future he must first exorcise the tragic ghost of his past. // Angel Pavement (1930) is one of the great London novels. A social panorama of the city of London seen largely through the eyes of the employees of the firm Twigg & Dersingham, on the first floor of No. 8, Angel Pavement (a small cul-de-sac in the heart of London’s commercial district). Angel Pavement provides readers with a vivid picture of ordinary London life before the war and the blitz changed everything dramatically and is set against the background of the great depression. The story centres on the arrival of a mysterious Mr. Golspie from the Baltic region. Business at the firm has been struggling but Mr. Golspie looks set to change its fortunes. His arrival turns life upside down for everyone connected with the firm, but all is not what it seems with Mr. Golspie.. // Sir Michael & Sir George (1964): A satirical comedy first published in 1964 by one of the twentieth century’s most prolific, influential and adaptable writers. ‘Most people here don’t give a damn about scholarship and the arts, and they include nearly all the men who are running the country. They may pretend to, but they don’t really care…’ Deadly rivals Sir Michael Stratherrick (womaniser and Director of COMSA) and Sir George Drake (Director of DISCUS with little interest in the arts) are threatened with extinction. Her Majesty’s Treasury plans to abolish both organisations and set up a new and expanded arts department within the Ministry of Higher Education. There can only be room for one director. So begins a contemptuous fight for survival with both men and their organisations seeking to out-manoeuvre and undermine each other at every turn. As the action moves through the shire counties and the North of England, the strip-tease bars of Soho and the plush surroundings of expense account Mayfair, things become even more complicated as we learn that along with their jobs, Sir George’s marriage and Sir Michael’s carefree single days are also under threat. With Priestley’s characteristic humanity and sympathy for his characters’ plights, this tremendously entertaining satire attacks the whole world of subsidised arts councils, those who support them with public money, civil service bureaucrats and the machinations of Government politics. As bureaucracy and the reach of Government continue to expand, this is very much a relevant novel for our time.

1 in stock

Publisher City
1st thus
Priestley, J. B.
Very good, 1st edition, unclipped d/j (good, some bumping); blue boards, white cloth spine (some wear), gilt spine titling; text block firm, pages crisp and unmarked; some sunning on edges
8vo (230 x 150 / 9" x 6")
Page Count