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Noondayby Pat Barker (Hamish Hamilton, £18.99)

Pat Barker won the Booker Prize in 1995 for the second novel in her Regeneration trilogy, which powerfully described early psychoanalysis and shell-shock during the First World War. So sex and death during the Blitz would seem like fertile ground for Barker’s new novel, Noonday.

A third of the way into the novel, one of the trio of central characters has a realisation. Paul has just helped a scruffy boy called Kenny, who had been evacuated from London because of the Blitz, return home to his mother, only to see…

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