Kenney knows two essential truths about melodrama: First that it is most powerful when combined with irony and understatement; and second that it is a salient feature of modern life.

They are the literary equivalent of sequins on an evening dress.

The catalogue of miseries seems to cry out for commercial spots and a station break: the stuff of noonday soap opera.

They were real pioneers.

She was a very acute observer.

There's something strange and powerful about black-and-white imagery.