A Kind of Loving
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A Kind of Loving is a novel by the English novelist Stan Barstow. First published in 1960, it has long been used as a set text in British schools. It has also been translated at various times into a film of the same name, a television series, a radio play and a stage play. A Kind of Loving was the first of a trilogy, published over the course of sixteen years, that followed hero Vic Brown through marriage, divorce and a move from the mining town of Cressley to London. The other two parts are The Watchers on the Shore and The Right True End.
The story presents us to Vic Brown, a young working-class man from Yorkshire, England, who is slowly inching his way up from his working-class roots through a white-collar job. Vic finds himself trapped by the frightening reality of his girlfriend Ingrid's pregnancy and is forced into marrying her and moving in with his mother-in-law due to a housing shortage in their Northern England town.
The story is about love and loneliness. Vic meets and is very attracted to the beautiful but demanding Ingrid. As their relationship develops and transforms into real-life everyday aridity and boredom, Vic ultimately comes to terms with his life and what it really means to love. The novel has had some influence on the literary community, leaving the label "lad-lit" behind.
In 1962 the novel was turned into a film A Kind of Loving directed by John Schlesinger and starring Alan Bates and June Ritchie. In 1982 ITV made a ten-part television series A King of Loving starring Clive Wood as Vic Brown and Joanne Whalley as Ingrid Brown.
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