Sunday, 6 December 2009

Levy's Small Island on the small screen

If you're interested in migration, history, separation and loss then this dramatisation might interest you. I loved reading Andrea Levy's novel, Small Island (2004) a few years ago and shall be glued (if I can get the kids to bed on time!) to this adaptation over two Sunday evenings.

Small Island is Andrea Levy's award-winning story of Jamaicans and Londoners involved in World War Two. Part of the reason she was inspired to write the book was because her own father was on the now-famous SS Empire Windrush in 1948 when it set sail from Jamaica to England.

The drama starts tonight on BBC1. Andrea Levy's narrative switches between four protagonists. The first, Queenie, is Gilbert's white landlady; they met during wartime when he came over as an RAF recruit. Returning on the SS Empire Windrush, he looks her up and takes a room in her house. Hortense, the Jamaican girl whom Gilbert married immediately before boarding the boat, arrives later to share his crumbling attic room; and Queenie's long-lost husband, Bernard, finds his way back, a year after his demob, shortly after Hortense has taken up residence. The year is 1948.

Promo clip here:

The BBC site also gives us this useful collection of links:

1 comment:

Tricky said...

I watched this and was hooked. I can't wait for the conclusion next week!