Young woman working behind a make up counter in a small department store in an anonymous Northern town, engaged to be married to her first love meets mysterious stranger baring exotic tales of down south. Does she or doesn’t she? In the tradition of the great Northern coming of age novels such as ‘Saturday Night, Sunday Morning’, ‘Kestrel for a Knave’ and ‘Billy Liar’ Laura Barton’s debut captures the atmosphere of north-west satellite towns with a deft feminine touch (and without mentioning Donk once, the prevalent sound listened to by young people in these places) punctuated by poetry. NB: Ignore the cover, it’s truly terrible, has little to do with what is contained apart from the title, and I would gladly tell whoever designed it this.
Twenty-One Locks: Laura Barton