Sunday, 15 March 2015

Our Spoons Came from Woolworths - Barbara Comyns

Some titles make you want to have that book and read it! So it was the title that first drew me to this book, and I'm glad I found it. Barbara Comyns did have a poverty-stricken first marriage, and all that went with it, which is well described and yet a little disguised in this short novel.

With no parents, Sophia is whisked off her feet (and out of her bedsitter) by Charles,a young artist who is a similar age and at 21, marriage is not what she really expects. When she becomes pregnant, that's the cat amongst the pidgeons; for Charles will never be anything other than a big child himself, a man who thinks himself a great artist, and who detests the idea of children of his own. He is selfish and for me, a rather obnoxious young man who only turns on the charm when there is a little money around. Sophie, who has nothing, and never has had, finds the lack of funds and his withdrawal from family life once Sandro, her son is born bewildering, and finally hateful.

 It's short, only 200+ pages, but Sophia is a naive but amusing narrator, even when you are reading some hellish happenings, including roaming the streets with a small baby looking for a roof over her head. Reprinted several times by Virago, if you have a look at Amazon you will find several different covers.