Before the First World War, when Wandsworth was still a countrified suburb, P.Y. Betts grew up there, observing with absolute clarity the behaviour and conversation of the adults around her. She did not always understand the implications of what she saw and heard but she remembered it and recreates it with startling immediacy. There were summer holidays at places that always seemed to begin with 'B, dark and smoggy winters when she was dosed with either brown medicine or red tonic, dreaded Christmas with her Grandfather and joyous schooldays with Mrs Stroud that consisted mainly of dictation from the 'Daily Mail'. Phyliss was five when the First World War broke out and she was left with the abiding belief that people who say goodbye did not come back again. Written with the keen eye for humour that pervades all her work and with the candour of childhood, this delightful and refreshing book captivates all who read it.