Beyond This Place by A J Cronin. My first Cronin was The Citadel, which although depressing ended well, so then I read The Stars Look Down, which was depressing enough that I avoided him for a couple of years. This was less depressing! And also not overly preachy - the author does like to make Important Social Points in his writing, but it works with the story rather than being bolted on.
One Of Us by Michael Marshall Smith. This was OK; a somewhat uneven blend of satire, noir, and cod philosophy. I made it to the end but am unlikely to re-read.