Families are places of love, care, and fun; also of anger, anxiety, and quarrels.
Not Speaking tells the story of a Greek matriarch, Rena, and her English children in post-war London and the present. It begins with Rena's move out of a flat in St John's Wood owned by her son Nicky Clarke, and the family disagreement that erupted.
Moving through the London slums of Blackfriars, Greece under Nazi occupation, the Old Kent Road, Elephant and Castle, and the world of celebrity hairdressing, this is a tale of fame, infidelity and its consequences.
And in the end, it has a message: every family is unique and all families are the same.
- 'Wonderfully evocative - funny, illuminating and moving.' - Jenny Uglow
- ‘Clarke tells the family’s story brilliantly – everyone and no-one is to blame for everything.’
- ‘There are few if any accounts of family life that share the hunger, determination and erudition of Not Speaking – it’s a searching and resonant work of memoir and social history.’