Some of my readers may know that my father was a writer, and published ten novels and a number of plays before his early death as a result of a stroke in 1963.
Persephone Books, to the family's great delight, have republished one of them. Here is a review.
Patience by John Coates - review
By Alfred Hickling
The Guardian, Tuesday 9 October 2012
The Persephone imprint concerns itself principally with reissuing obscure books by women. It makes an exception for John Coates's 1953 comic novel, as he seemed to have no difficulty inhabiting the mind of the eponymous heroine – a devout Catholic and biddable young wife who for seven years has "lived in a state which varied from supreme contentment when having tea with her babies, to passive unresistance when being made love to by her husband". The story concerns Patience's discovery that sin may be more fulfilling than duty, having fallen passionately in love with a young pianist, while her husband Edward – who turns out to have been not entirely faithful himself – huffs and puffs at this show of disobedience. Coates created a nimble satire, blowing on the dying embers of Victorian double standards before the permissive society took over. There's a well- rounded portrait of the stodgy, patrician Edward, who has "the bluff, handsome exterior and rather shabby interior of a first- class, second-rate politician".
And this written in 1954: