First published in 1978, and widely considered to be the sequel to her masterpiece ‘By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept’, this remarkable book further established Smart’s reputation as a brave and inspirational writer. A still beautiful woman, 31 years old with four children by a faithless lover, cannot break the habit of expectation. She must learn to submit to the cold, bare, unglamorous tenets of reality – the untenable position of love. She must learn to deflect Grand Passion into an acceptance of the rogues and rascals with their radiant faces, who buy her a bitter with borrowed cash. Out of a passionate youth, through pain and harsh revelation, she has attained a maturity – a certain knowledge that the cost of rapture is high and that there is no looking back. Hers is a voice that distils a woman’s determination for survival – a voice that rises up from everyday life, from the bus queue, the Underground, the pub – and in Elizabeth Smart’s hand is wrought into something magnificent.