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Mike Gayle

Forfatter af Kvinden i mit liv

21+ Works 3,221 Members 109 Reviews 8 Favorited

Om forfatteren

Mike Gayle is a freelance journalist and a former advice columnist who has written for Ms., The Sunday Times Style Magazine, Seventeen, The Express, and other U.K. publications. His first novel, My Legendary Girlfriend, sold 300,000 copies in the United Kingdom. He lives in London, England. (Bowker vis mere Author Biography) vis mindre

Includes the name: Mike Gayle

Image credit: Photo by Liane Hentscher

Værker af Mike Gayle

Kvinden i mit liv (1998) 498 eksemplarer
Turning Thirty (2000) 460 eksemplarer
Mr. Commitment (1999) 397 eksemplarer
Dinner for Two (2002) 309 eksemplarer
All the Lonely People (2020) 249 eksemplarer
Brand New Friend (2005) 219 eksemplarer
His 'n' Hers (2004) 209 eksemplarer
Wish You Were Here (2007) 136 eksemplarer
The To-Do List (2009) 122 eksemplarer
The Museum of Ordinary People (2022) 119 eksemplarer
Half a World Away (2019) 110 eksemplarer
The Man I Think I Know (2018) 77 eksemplarer
The Life and Soul of the Party (2008) 75 eksemplarer
The Importance of Being a Bachelor (2010) 51 eksemplarer
Turning Forty (2013) 46 eksemplarer
Men at Work (2011) 40 eksemplarer
Seeing Other People (2014) 36 eksemplarer
The Hope Family Calendar (1886) 30 eksemplarer
The Stag and Hen Weekend (2012) 29 eksemplarer
A Song of Me & You (2023) 7 eksemplarer

Associated Works

Girls' Night Out/Boys' Night In (2001) — Bidragyder — 82 eksemplarer
Please: Fiction Inspired by The Smiths (2009) — Bidragyder — 38 eksemplarer
12 Days: A Modern Twist on The Twelve Days of Christmas (2004) — Bidragyder — 25 eksemplarer

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Kanonisk navn
Gayle, Mike
Juridisk navn
Gayle, Mike
agony uncle



Hubert Bird, the octogeneranian protagonist in this sentimental novel, is in the present time a lonely widower living in the London borough of Bromley. He is one of my favorite characters of the books I read this year.

The fictional Mr. Bird arrived in England from Jamaica in the 1950s as part of the Windrush generation, an initiative under British law that encouraged people from the Caribbean British Commonwealth countries to migrate to Britain to help address the country’s post-WWII labor shortage. In exchange, the immigrants coming from countries with little economic opportunity were granted British citizenship and rights to settle in England. What Mr. Bird and others like him were not expecting was the blatant racism he and his fellow immigrants would face in housing and in the workplace, which increases when he marries a white woman, Joyce, who he met at the department store, in which he works in the warehouse. The story moves between the two timelines, past and present. In addition to the theme of isolation via racism, as the title suggests, isolation via circumstance or choice after major personal losses occupies much of the book. Mr. Bird’s delightful neighbor, Ashleigh, and her toddler daughter, eventual coaxes him out of his shell.

The story is part romance as well – the nearly 50-year marriage between Hubert and Joyce, before she died, was a beautiful example of romantic love and commitment to one’s promises as they raised their two children, Rose and David. The story had an unanticipated twist toward the end that added another, sadder layer of texture to Mr. Bird’s loneliness, but I found that whole premise implausible, unfortunately, so it detracted a little from the story. For that reason, I could not give it a four-star review. Still a very enjoyable story and timely, given it is ultimately about emerging from isolation and reconnecting with people, which many of us who have worked remotely during the pandemic are still adjusting to.
… (mere)
bschweiger | 15 andre anmeldelser | Feb 4, 2024 |
An average story of grief, the value of one's history (and the dangers of revealing some of it), a young woman coming into her own instead of going with the flow. Nothing earth-shattering and some chick lit vibes.
bookappeal | 7 andre anmeldelser | Dec 31, 2023 |

In January 1958, a young Jamaican by the name of Hubert Bird sails to Southampton in search of a bright future like many others of the Windrush Generation. He finds employment and has to endure blatant racism and discrimination both in the workplace and in society in general, but remains hopeful. Hubert meets his future wife Joyce, falls in love and marries her - an inter-racial marriage that is not accepted by Joyce’s family. A hardworking and honest man, loving husband and devoted father to two children, Hubert settles down in Bromley with his wife and family.

Our protagonist Hubert Bird, is presently in his 80s and lives alone in his home in Bromley, with his pet cat Puss as his only companion after having lost his wife of forty-seven years thirteen years ago. He has isolated himself from his friends and community for the last five years, including his closest friend Gus and looks forward to the weekly phone calls from his daughter Rose, a professor working in Australia. His daughter worries about his being alone and to appease her he concocts stories about fictitious friends and regales her with stories revolving around his busy social life. When his daughter plans a visit, he realizes that he will be caught in his deception and strives to rectify his situation and ventures out to reconnect with his old crowd but that does not happen.

"When you don’t see someone regularly you imagine them carrying on with their lives as they’d always done from one year to the next, but the truth was things changed. People grew old and got sick, they sold up and moved on; they weren’t frozen in time waiting for the day that you knocked on their door looking for them.”

When a young single mother, Ashleigh and her young daughter move into his neighborhood and attempt to befriend him, he initially tries to avoid them but in the face of Ashleigh’s upbeat and friendly nature, his defenses start to crumble and he begins to enjoy their company. Eventually, Ashleigh inspires and motivates him to join her efforts in seeking out other people like themselves who also feel isolated and lonely, creating a “campaign” against loneliness banding the community together in a great initiative.

“Moments later as he stood on the doorstep waving goodbye to his new neighbors, the embrace was all he could think about, and once he’d closed the door firmly behind him, he felt his legs buckling as tear after tear rolled down his cheeks. And in that moment, as he attempted to stem his tears, Hubert realized something he hadn’t quite understood before now: he was lonely, really lonely, and most likely had been for a very long time.”

Mike Gayle’s ‘All The Lonely People’ is a wonderfully crafted story with an endearing cast of characters and a fluid narrative, revolving around themes of family, friendship, loneliness and community. The author touches upon sensitive issues such as racism, substance abuse, age-related dementia and elder care with compassion and restraint. The author’s strength lies in his characterizations and his sensitive portrayal of relationships. The chapters alternate between Hubert’s past (starting from 1957) and the present day. The novel is very well–structured and I enjoyed both the past and present tracks in the narrative. Though the story primarily revolves around Hubert Bird, the author also gives due importance to his other characters and explores how loneliness impacts both the elderly and the younger generation as well as immigrants and those battling illness and addiction and emphasizes the importance of community, kindness and inclusivity. Overall, the novel is well-paced but some parts of the story are a tad long-drawn and could have been shorter. The events that unfold in the course of the story alternate between heartbreakingly sad, funny, hopeful and heartwarming. This is an emotionally heavy read that will resonate with many and will ultimately leave you smiling through your tears. ‘All The Lonely People’ is my first Mike Gayle novel and I look forward to reading more of his work in the future.

“You see, the key to helping other people out of them loneliness is nothing more difficult than good old-fashioned perseverance. It’s not always easy, me know that, but you’ve got to be willing to keep doors open, to carry on trying even if it doesn’t look like it’s working. You’ve got to refuse to give up on people, even if them given up on themselves.”
… (mere)
srms.reads | 15 andre anmeldelser | Sep 4, 2023 |
After her mum’s death, Jess has to clear out her mum’s house, and declines any help from her friends. It’s an emotional week, giving away the accumulation of decades. Without much space to take things back to the home she shares with her live-in boyfriend, she has to get rid of nearly everything. What she can’t do it part with an old set of beloved encyclopedias. Taking them back with her, they sit in bags, clearly in the way. She tries giving them away, but nobody wants them. Finally a friend tells her about a museum that takes things that have no other home. And so begins Jess’s long journey, perhaps to the fulfillment of her life’s dream . . . if dreams can come true. This very well written tale is one of perseverance and struggle, of love and friendship, of recovering from loss, and of dreaming dreams. The characters are quite real as they go about their everyday lives. The unexpected connections in the story, the twists and turns that force the characters into a direction they would not have chosen, are well told and intriguing. The thought-provoking story is an uplifting one, and makes me wish I could visit such a museum. It’s such a marvelous idea, as is this novel. Recommended for ordinary readers who want to read an extraordinary book.… (mere)
Maydacat | 7 andre anmeldelser | Jul 8, 2023 |



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