The Kindness of Women

This is the second in a series of JG Ballard classics that Steven Pacey reads for Rushforth Media. Following on from Empire of the Sun, Ballard’s account of a boy’s ordeal in Japanese occupied Shanghai in WWII, The Kindness of Women, Ballard’s sequel, following post-war life in England, will be released on 7 October, 2014, and is now available for pre-order.

Kindness of Women

The fascinating, and largely autobiographical, sequel to J. G. Ballard’s prize-winning Empire of the Sun, that follows Jim to post-war England. The Kindness of Women continues the story of the boy whose life in Japanese-occupied Shaghai was described so memorably in Empire of the Sun, it sets those traumatic events within the context of a lifetime as we follow the narrator, Jim, to England and suburban Shepperton after the war.

Jim tries and fails to find stability as a medical student at Cambridge and a trainee RAF pilot in Canada. Then, after settling happily into family life, his world is ripped apart by domestic tragedy. He plunges into the maelstrom of the 1960s, an instigator and subject of every aspect of cultural, social, and sexual revolution. All this and much more, we see as the attempt of a bruised mind to make sense of the upheaval around it.

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