THE HIDDEN PART by Stan Barstow


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The West Riding evidently has its Peyton Place aspects. Here's Tom Simpkins, a wealthy widower and town councilman who has regularly, sedately and discreetly shacked up with Norma Moffat for 17 years. He stays steady but harassed through the aftermath of the traffic death of Norma's acquiescent cuckold. Not so Shirley, the teenage daughter Tom had fathered on Norma, who reacts badly to the realization of what Mum's been up to all these years and the fact that Tom is her real father. Norma's son almost quits the university rather than accept Tom's continued largesse, although he had long been aware of the affair, and Norma nearly goes round the bend in a spate of overdue guilt at her longterm adultery. Then, there is Philip Hart, the school teacher contesting Tom in the election. He not only loses the seat but two beds as well. His wife denounces him for carrying on with Tom's secretary and she renounces him so that he can fulfill his duties as a father. It's all very highminded with everybody anxious to do the right thing, or to continue doing the wrong thing, with the least amount of public fuss. A sudser with morality added as the bleach.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1969
Publisher: Coward-McCann