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Publisher's Summary

A full-cast adaptation of Lynne Reid Banks' best-selling novel, plus sequel The Backward Shadow and more.

Award-winning author Lynne Reid Banks is perhaps best known for her classic children's book The Indian in the Cupboard. But it was her groundbreaking debut novel for adults, The L-Shaped Room, that made her name. First published in 1960, it was an instant success and has been in print ever since. This collection contains both The L-Shaped Room and sequel The Backward Shadow, as well as two stories specially written for BBC radio and a bonus edition of Bookclub.

The L-Shaped Room - Jane is young, middle-class, single - and pregnant. Thrown out by her parents, she rents a squalid bedsit, where she struggles to overcome both her own prejudices and those of 1950s society. Starring Lynne Seymour as Jane, with John McAndrew as Toby.

The Backward Shadow - Living with her baby in a cottage inherited from her aunt, Jane's quiet life is shaken up by the arrival of her friend Dottie and the reappearance of Toby, the love of her life. Lynne Seymour stars as Jane, with Rachel Atkins as Dottie.

Who Shall I Run To? - Sally recalls how she and ex-husband Jeremy celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary with a romantic trip to Paris. Read by Siân Phillips.

Lame Duck - Anne and her artist husband, Lionel, have three boys and little time for going out - so they decide to take in a lodger who might be prepared to babysit occasionally. Sadly, things do not work out as planned.... Starring Anne Rosenfeld as Anne and Manning Wilson as Lionel.

Bookclub: Lynne Reid Banks - Readers talk to the celebrated author about The L-Shaped Room, describing what it means to them and how it has changed their lives. Chaired by James Naughtie.

Text copyright © Lynne Reid Banks 1960 (The L-Shaped Room), 1970 (The Backward Shadow), 1978 (Lame Duck), 2005 (Who Shall I Run To?)

Cast and credits

Written by Lynne Reid Banks

The L-Shaped Room

Jane - Lynne Seymour

Toby - John McAndrew

John - Trevor Laird

Father - Bill Wallis

Doris - Nickie Rainsford

Mavis - Marie Gordon Price

James - Simon Armstrong

Dr Maxwell - John Rowe

Jane 2/Dottie - Rachel Atkins

Boss - Dave Bond

Dr Graham - Richard Mitchley

Terry - Robert Bowman

Addy - Shirley Dixon

Dramatised by Juliet Ace

Produced and directed by Alison Hindell

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 23rd February-5th March 2004

The Backward Shadow

Jane - Lynne Seymour

Dottie - Rachel Atkins

Toby - John McAndrew

Henry - Simon Luddes

Father/Ted - Don McCorkindale

Billy Lee - Lesley Rooney

Alan - Keiron Self

Mrs Stephens - Manon Edwards

Dora - Siriol Jenkins

John - Trevor Laird

Joanna - Nickie Rainsford

Dramatised by Juliet Ace

Produced and directed by Alison Hindell

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 16th-27th May 2005

Who Shall I Run To?

Read by Siân Phillips

Produced by Emma Harding

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 14th August 2005

Lame Duck

Cliff - Christopher Guard

Anne - Anne Rosenfeld

Lionel - Manning Wilson

Jamie - Judy Bennett

Terry - Delia Morgan

Dan - Elizabeth Lindsay

Jacky - Karen Archer

Mr Brent, a publican - Bruce Beeby

Mrs Brent - Jane Knowles

Directed by David B Godfrey

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 6th January 1978

Bookclub: Lynne Reid Banks

Presented by James Naughtie

With Lynne Reid Banks and a live studio audience

Produced by Dymphna Flynn

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 6th June 2010

©2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

What listeners say about The L-Shaped Room, Backward Shadow & Other Stories

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  • 05-08-22

Probably an unfair review but an honest one

It’s not easy listening, very annoying music betw chapter changes. Couldn’t finish as too annoying which is a shame because I’ve heard such good reviews on this book. Maybe better in a hard copy instead of audio.