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Lollipop Laurels

Benjamin Markovits: Alice McDermott, 7 August 2003

Child of My Heart 
by Alice McDermott.
Bloomsbury, 242 pp., £14.99, May 2003, 0 7475 6323 3
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... Alice McDermott writes about Irish-American blue-collar neighbourhoods in Queens and Brooklyn, and summer getaways on Long Island. Someone in her novels always has a cottage there, acquired by a stroke of good fortune and maintained in spite of the surrounding gentrification. She writes about the generation before hers: the policemen, mailmen, shoe salesmen and streetcar conductors still recovering from the Second World War; and their wives, who make do, limited by the meagreness of their possible ambitions ...

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