"The story began with my father telling me: ‘You will have to earn a living.’ He said it to me several times during my childhood (which began in 1917), and the way he said it implied that earning one’s living was not quite natural."
I wonder if this is part of the problem. She was not of a class or a gender that ever had to work, so doesn’t seem to regard work as part of her own personal story. She is bizarrely disconnected from the highs and lows of the journey, and descends to that lowest low of the upper class English memoir, name-dropping. (Nadir of this style: Antonia Fraser’s horrifying MUST YOU GO: MY LIFE WITH HAROLD PINTER). I did however find it useful for recommendations on what to read next, and so am picking my way through Deutsh’s back catalogue, finding such gems as the deeply obscure Zimbabwean memoir THE TOE-RAGS. So that's something.