Set in the north London suburb of Palmers Green in the 1970s, the story opens with Colette Jones attending the funeral of her elder brother's wife, followed by her failed attempts to save him from excessive drinking. Alcoholism also destroys the life of Colette's son, a talented pianist, whom she tries to exile from her house.
It seems likely that the title was inspired by the William Shakespeare play King Lear. "And I'll go to bed at noon" is the last line spoken by the Fool.
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