The Bonny Pit Laddie
Dick Ullathorne's grandmother knew that Dick had the ability to find fulfilment away from the pit and the small mining community. A life in the pit, however, was inevitable for all his family and Dick's begins sooner than expected when a strike involving his quiet but angry father brings the family to poverty and starvation. The reality and historical exactness with which Grice describes mining life at the turn of the century creates an historical novel brimming with action but also with sympathy for the plight of pit families. In paperback at last (what kept it so long?) this could be the book to lead competent 12 and 13-year-olds to historical fiction and, more important, to a thoughtful consideration of the influences on communities of social and political forces. An important book for the library and the classroom.