Short and wonderfully written novel about a small group of misfits living on barges along the Thames in London. Fitzgerald manages to be sharp, funny, and compassionate toward her characters and the terrific writing about the big tidal river is informed by her own time spent living on a boat in London. Two precocious sisters get all the best lines:
"It's his own fault if he's kind. It's not the kind who inherit the earth, it's the poor, the humble, and the meek."
"What do you think happens to the kind, then?"
"They get kicked in the teeth."