Lewycka, Marina "Two Caravans" (aka Strawberry Fields) - 2007
After having read and enjoyed "A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian", I was interested in reading the next book by this author.
As in her first book, Marina Lewycka describes the life of Ukrainians (and Polish) citizens in England, this time they are no immigrants but seasonal/migrant workers. Again, an easy read, interesting and quite enjoyable. A lot of information about those cheap workers that most Western European countries import to do their dirty or hard work, the dreams they have when they come to our countries, the way they are treated and how they find their way - or not.
The characters are described very well, you meet them in a setting that makes it easy to follow their lives, wanting to help or sometimes kick them, depending on the situation.
As with her first book, I didn't really find it funny but a very good read.
From the book cover:
"Also published as Strawberry Fields.
The bestselling author of A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian is back with an 'effervescent comedy' (The New Yorker)
The follow up to her hugely popular first novel presents a Canterbury Tales inspired picaresque that is also a biting satire of economic exploitation. When a ragtag international crew of migrant workers is forced to flee the strawberry fields they have been working in, they set off across England looking for employment. Displaying the same sense of compassion, social outrage, and gift for hilarity that she showed in A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian, Marina Lewycka chronicles their bumpy road trip with a tender affection for her downtrodden characters and their search for a taste of the good life."