At times, the drama is weakened by Loyd's writerly tics. At one point, he muses that "it was only a matter of time before their dumbfounded sledgehammer would recollect its sense and plough down on the ripe insurgent fruit". And he has an unfortunate habit of dangling his modifiers, the grammatical error that so amuses the pedants. Every half-dozen pages, one crops up: "A maverick of her generation, the men in my mother's life had always been more conservative than she." It's easy to forgive, but a more rigorous edit would have helped.The rigorous edit here would have changed the sentence to read: "A maverick of her generation, my mother always dated men more conservative than she."
We love how British critics spank, then forgive. It's a nation of Super Nannies. Jolly good!