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The Literary Lounge

Some things people have said about
Before the Swallow Dares

5.0 out of 5 stars

A really good read - well worth buying

By Valerie on 23 Oct. 2012

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase

This is a beautifully-written and sensitive story which illustrates perfectly the way love changes with age, and which is sometimes funny, sometimes heart-rending, but always engaging.

The author, a well-known writer in other genres but whose first novel this is, is advanced in years himself, and clearly understands the sort of things that happen in later life, for, while some of the characters in Before the Swallow Dares have the familiar problems of later life to cope with, they are far removed from the decrepit and subdued elderly generation so frequently portrayed - in their general determination to get on with their lives and enjoy themselves if possible, they are much more like the older people that I know myself.

In consequence, this is not just a book which older people will enjoy, it is a book which should be compulsory reading for the younger generations.

5.0 out of 5 stars


By Diana M. Hockley on May 15, 2015

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

A most unusual novel, well written, which documents the lives of four people, three of whom knew each other at school and then meet at the end of their lives. The fourth, the wife of one of the couples, is just meeting the other couple.

This is delightful in that the plot shows that romance and passion is not absent from older people's lives, it's all there simmering underneath the white hair and liver-spotted hands. The author was 79 when he wrote this, so he was in a good position to understand the problems and hopes of the elderly - and the well-kept secrets!!!

This is a sensitive and humorous work and I just loved it. NO SPOILERS, you'll have to read it for yourself!


4.0 out of 5 stars

Old style

By Euphemia Black on 18 Aug. 2013

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

I really liked this. It is written in a gentle, old fashioned style - plain, almost pedantic prose, just telling a story in a way which makes you want to read on. It ends sadly, but not tragically as I thought it would at the beginning. Having read about Tony Whelpton I see he has written about what he knows - French, cricket, classical choirs, middle class. I will be reading his other novel and looking out for more.

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