This Much Huxley Knows by Gail Aldwin #TuesdayBookBlog #RBRT

I’m seven years old and I’ve never had a best mate. Trouble is, no one gets my jokes. And Breaks-it isn’t helping. Ha! You get it, don’t you? Brexit means everyone’s falling out and breaking up.

Huxley is growing up in the suburbs of London at a time of community tensions. To make matters worse, a gang of youths is targeting isolated residents. When Leonard, an elderly newcomer chats with Huxley, his parents are suspicious. But Huxley is lonely and thinks Leonard is too. Can they become friends?

Funny and compassionate, this contemporary novel for adults explores issues of belonging, friendship and what it means to trust.

My Review

This is a story of a family and their friends in pre-pandemic England . It’s very easy to empathise with 7-year-old Huxley because we see the world through his eyes. He doesn’t conform to the norm that his classmates expect so he’s often lonely, but Huxley has a great sense of humour defined by his particular “word wangles”. We teach children to read using sounds, so it’s no wonder that he calls pneumonia, new-moan-ear and sarcastic, star-cast-stick. Huxley’s parents, Kirsty and Jed, love and care for him greatly, but he thinks they worry too much. He has made friends with Leonard, an old man who uses a mobility scooter and who offers him chocolate. As a reader, I was on the fence. Leonard is probably innocently misguided but is there more to his behaviour?

This is generally a story of warmth and humour of everyday life in a country divided by Brexit. One kindly grandmother shows racist prejudice while another trusting old lady is teased by young people. This tale of a contemporary community makes you think of how being self-centred and jumping to conclusions can be so destructive. Huxley takes everyone at face value and doesn’t judge others. Eventually he discovers a friend at school, his parents make an exciting decision, and the book ends on a positive wave. I would recommend this novel to anyone who needs a feel-good read in depressing times.

This much Huxley Knows can be found on Amazon UK

Gail Aldwin

Gail Aldwin is a British writer who has lived and worked in Australia, Papua New Guinea, Uganda and Spain. As well as novels, short fiction and poetry, Gail co-writes short plays and comedy sketches with 3-She, a collaborative group of three women writers. Their shows have been staged at theatres and arts centres in South West England. Follow Gail on social media – she loves to interact with readers and writers.




Published by lizannelloyd

Love history, reading, researching and writing. Articles published in My Family History and other genealogy magazines.

8 thoughts on “This Much Huxley Knows by Gail Aldwin #TuesdayBookBlog #RBRT

      1. Oh yes, I read and enjoyed Jessica’s novel. It’s set in the same timeframe of an autumn term but in an earlier year. Fran Hill’s memoir ‘What Does Incomprehensible Mean?’ is a great windo into the life of a secondary school.


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