'Teetotal!' Ma said. 'It's a libel. Whatever will people think? What's he going to say when anybody asks him to have one?' No, said Dr Conner. And so after a mild heart-attack - Pop Larkin finds himself off the booze. While Ma tries to find ways around 'doctor's orders', young Primrose is finding her own way round a flustered - Mr Candy.
H. E. Bates was born in 1905 in Northamptonshire. He worked as a journalist and clerk on a local newspaper before publishing his first book, The Two Sisters, when he was twenty. During the Second World War he was a Squadron Leader in the R.A.F. The Darling Buds of May, the first of the popular Larkin family novels, was followed by A Breath of French Air (1959), When the Green Woods Laugh (1960), Oh! To Be in England (1963). His works have been translated into sixteen languages. H. E. Bates was awarded the C.B.E. in 1973 and died in January 1974