Book Review – No Such Thing As Society: A History of Britain in the 1980s by Andy McSmith

This is a book about life in the 1980s. It follows the decade from beginning to end through the fashion and music trends, the implosion of the Labour party, the rise of Margaret Thatcher, the IRA bombing campaigns, the Brighton bomb at the Tory conference hotel, Bobby Sands and the hunger strikers, Diana, the miners’ strike, the change to the newspaper industry; Live Aid … I could go on and on and on. 

It’s only when you read this book that you realise how much you have forgotten. However, it is not necessarily a historical interpretation of the period as obviously not everything could be included. I found it to be more of a dipping in and out of events.  For me there was nothing new revealed but more a case of “Gosh, I remember that..”.  The author is a journalist and that comes across in the way the book is written. The style is almost gossipy but it is clear and concise. It is a very well written book and very easy to read.

By the way, in case you can’t place it, the title is a quote from Margaret Thatcher.

Reading Group member

Reserve a copy online, and collect from your nearest library.