The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

the paying guests

This was a book club selection so I had no idea what it would be about. This will be a short review because I do not want to spoil any of the surprises for anyone. Our protagonist lives with her mother in a big, posh house is South London in 1922. The menfolk of the family have died and they need some income to keep their house. They take in lodgers, or paying guests.

The first part of the story is a good portrait of 1920s London, and I enjoyed the clash of the two classes of people; the home-owners and the lodgers. I find this period in British history very interesting; when the upper classes found that they were forced to mix with the middle classes and when the middle and working classes found that they had a bit more freedom to move up in the world. There are also many interesting illustrations of how the roles of women were changing so drastically at this time.

There is a romance and a huge crisis and there are a few things that provoke thought of the what-would-you-do variety. It will be a good book club book and should make for good discussion.

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One Response to The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

  1. carrolkuhlow@cox.net says:

    Thanks Claire. I’ve requested it from the library.

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