Tennis Lessons: clever, odd and intimate tale of Northern childhood
Susannah Dickey’s powerful writing brings a girl’s coming of age into sharp focus
Susannah Dickey gets the reader on board quickly and refuses to let them flinch.
In the hands of a skilled writer that lesser-spotted animal, the second-person voice, can be used to great effect in fiction.
Sara Baume gave a brutal poignancy to her marginalised narrator in Spill Simmer Falter Wither through a second-person narrative told to a one-eyed dog. In Ghost Light, Joseph O’Connor’s luminous and underrated novel about the actor Molly Allgood, the second person created an intimacy with a protagonist whose failing career and past loves had brought her low. And Claire Keegan’s short story The Parting Gift is a masterclass in second person, providing the reader a devastating proximity to a young woman leaving a troubled childhood home.