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Christopher Fowler
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'Riceyman Steps' by Arnold Bennett (1923) is a tough read, being relentlessly downbeat until a faint ray of light at the close. It concerns the final year in the life of Henry, who keeps a second-hand bookshop in Clerkenwell area (the steps are still there although most of the houses have gone - they used to be known as the 'Plum Pudding Steps' - no-one seems to know why). Henry marries Violet, a…
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Years