Sarah Broadhurst’s view…
A slight departure for this highly regarded author being an historical tale of Edwardian London and Canada based on a true story from his family history. Harry Case, a gentleman in suburban London, marries and has a daughter. Unexpectedly he discovers he is gay and has a passionate carnal affair with an actor. Huge family uproar and Harry is persuaded to cut himself off and emigrate to Canada. Here we follow him through hard grind and tough living as he joins a scheme to claim land on the prairie. He gets befriended and then dominated by a sinister Dane. Eventually Harry finds the partner of his dreams but along comes the war, the flu epidemic and more tragedy. Harry falls into a kind of madness. Finally, though, there is a happy ending of sorts. The frank treatment of gay love and sex is hardly shocking today but think back and relive a tough and sad life beautifully entered here.
If you like Patrick Gale you might also like to read books by Armistead Maupin, Edmund White and Alan Hollinghurst.
In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.
Sarah Musk – ‘A beautifully written, sensitive book for readers who love a strong story with well-drawn characters and an interesting historical background.’
Mary Chapman – ‘I have loved other characters in previous Patrick Gale novels of which I am a great fan and Harry is one of the best so far.’
Janette Skinner – ‘This is an excellent book, the writing is flawless and straightforward, a great story, and the interest stays right to the last page.’
Carolyn Huckfield – ‘It is a tender story that is beautifully written. Finding out that Gale got old family memoirs to build his story around and this makes it an even more moving.’
Alison Burns – ‘It was a moving story, especially as it was based on a real person’s life. I really felt for Harry and the difficulties life threw at him.
Phyl Smithson – ‘If you like an absorbing, extremely well-written and a reflection of how far society has come in human tolerance, then this is the one for you.’
Sue Broom – ‘A fictional tribute to one of the author’s great-grandfathers’ lives – a beautifully written and moving story that must have struck a chord with him.’
Cathy Petersen – ‘Beautifully written character study of a man adrift from himself, finding purpose, himself and love on the Canadian frontier.’
Barbara Goldie – ‘A totally engrossing read…just the thing to curl up with on a long winter night. A great story.’
Mary Gibson – ‘A compelling novel made more authentic as it is based on a real life mystery in the author’s family history.’
Cazanne Tuckett – ‘A story of one man’s life, loves and how he coped.’
Peter Baiden – ‘in some ways quite disturbing, even shocking, but should find its place with those who recognise the pain whilst finding love, in all its forms.’
Siobhan McDowell – ‘This author is undeniably skilled in his chosen field as he has a tremendous imagination…A rewarding read.’
Alison Layland – ‘A poignant, emotionally involving and gripping novel about the search for friendship, love and security in times of risk and prejudice.’
Susan Walsh – ‘Take two Brothers, two very different men & see what life deals them. A superb Book from Patrick Gale.’
Vikki Patis – ‘A journey of discovery, acknowledgement, and differences, A Place Called Winter is a heartbreakingly beautiful tale.’