The Impudence of Youth is a satire on the british class system. It is one of Warwick Deeping’s more shocking novels.
John James is a lad like no other, at least in the village. Miss Pope, his aunt and proprietor of the general store/post office, dotes on this genius of a lad who is afflicted with a growth deficiency which keeps his legs to childlike proportions. John goes off to Cambridge on a scholarship and is treated mercilessly by the other young gentlemen. He is given the nickname ‘Tadpole’ and finds another aspect of life in Germany. He wants to set up a private laboratory and finds rooms in Unicorn Place in the East End of London. Here he discovers life as it is, or was, and eventually falls in love with Kitty.