College life in Oxford, England; professors and under-graduates; mysteries; sexual entanglements; politics; curiosity...philosophers (of course), and the problems or architecture, history, and that tendency of historical buildings to require large quantities of money spent on repair... which brings you back to politics.
The difference between Oxford and Cambridge--well, one of the differences--is that Oxford is a much bigger town. Oxford colleges have a very different feel to Cambridge colleges, opening, as they do, to cramped town streets, where the bustling life of the rest of the world is very much on the doorstep. But pass through those doors and there's history, quiet quandrangles, narrow staircases, leaded windows and manicured lawns, all under the pall of the present and its eagerness to intervene.
J.I.M. Stewart's Oxford quintet is a set of five books set in Oxford, centering on Duncan Patullo and his complex life, married, separated, teaching, learning, and wondering how to raise the money to save "the tower." It's another nicely drawn characterization of college life, with intriguing characters and tons of atmosphere, and more besides.
Looks like it's out of print now, but there's still old copies around...
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About the reviewer
Sheila Deeth (SheilaDeeth)
Sheila Deeth's first novel, Divide by Zero, has just been released in print and ebook formats. Find it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, etc. Her spiritual speculative novellas can be found at … more
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