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George Bowling, a forty-five-year-old insurance salesman with a wife and two children, is overweight, depressed and haunted by ever-present portents of imminent global conflict. Hoping to escape the staid suburban rut in which he has become embedded, he travels to Lower Binfield, the rural idyll of his childhood, in an effort to recapture his halcyon youth. But once there he discovers that the tranquil haven of his treasured memories has fallen victim to the rapaciousness of 'progress', and is forced to reflect on the folly of nostalgia and the impossibility of reliving the past. By turns comic and melancholy, Orwell's fourth novel - published in 1939 to critical and commercial acclaim by Victor