Second City Blues

Two new accounts of growing up and leaving Birmingham provide moving accounts of the snobbery and misunderstanding directed at England's second city.

Birmingham Central Library, Chamberlain Square, Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom, Architect: John Madin Design Group, 1974, Birmingham Central Library John Madin Exterior South Elevation (Photo by View Pictures/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Something odd happened to me while reading I Don’t Want to Go to the Taj Mahal by Charlie Hill and Bolt from the Blue by Jeremy Cooper, both set in my native city of Birmingham. I devoured the two books at breakneck speed, both of them requiring of me almost no concerted effort of imagination […]

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