John Braine (1922-86) made a strong impact with his first novel, Room at the Top (1957), which became a best-seller and was adapted into a powerful British New Wave film in 1959. He went on to write twelve more novels, but these never enjoyed the same critical or commercial success as his first. He also produced two non-fiction books, a How-To manual called Writing a Novel (1974) and, in 1978, a critical biography of a writer with whom he felt some affinity, J(ohn) B(oynton) Priestley (1894-1984). Both of these are readable but undistinguished.

Braine is usually assigned to three overlapping categories. The first, and most important, is the  “Angry Young Men”, which was neither a coherent …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are a member (student of staff) of a subscribing institution (see List), you should be able to access the LE on campus directly (without the need to log in), and off-campus either via the institutional log in we offer, or via your institution's remote access facilities, or by creating a personal user account with your institutional email address. If you are not a member of a subscribing institution, you will need to purchase a personal subscription. For more information on how to subscribe as an individual user, please see under Individual Subcriptions.

Tredell, Nicolas. "John Braine". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 04 June 2014
[, accessed 01 December 2015.]

Articles on Braine's works

  1. Life at the Top
  2. Room at the Top

Related Groups

  1. Angry Young Men