Love, Nina is a collection of letters Nina wrote to her sister in the 1980s while she was nannying in London. That might not sound great, but it is. Nina is un-selfconsciously funny in a way that can only be compared to Adrian Mole. Her day-to-day life in London is seriously more interesting than my life at any point. Her attempts at cooking sounds woefully inadequate and yet the family she’s working for don’t seem to mind. And everything is commented upon by Alan Bennett and other London luminaries of the day.
The most impressive thing about Love, Nina is that it is comprised of missives to her sister. The writing is brilliant for someone who was not trying to impress anyone. At the time, Nina surely didn’t know that she would one day go onto publish these letters, but the writing is so clear and concise with scathing observations.
Love, Nina has been on my TBR for quite some time now. It was a smash hit in the UK. But the reason I’ve now read it is because I will be seeing Stibbe at the Edinburgh Book Festival where she will be talking about her new novel. I can’t wait to hear what she has to say, especially since the new novel is purported to be rather autobiographical.
Who would like this book? I can sum this up in a few key words: British, 1980s, funny, Adrian Mole. If that gets your attention, then this book is for you.