Publisher: Random House
Picture this....you are on holiday....you ran out of paper books 2 days ago so have been merrily reading your kindle. Then The Boy runs out of paper books too and doesn't have his own kindle!!! What do you do? You go to a book shop god damn it and get books!! This is the book I got.
This book was a 'lost' manuscript from JS. It was written when he was rather young and before he came to prominence and won all his prises. That was pretty much what drew me to it. And here is my review.
This is a collection of short snapshots in to the lives of many different people who live in one apartment block. How their lives mingle, what they get up to and what they feel. It is, to be honest, surprisingly entertaining. I know I use the phrase 'character studies' all the bloody time, but this is essentially what this book is, a collection of character studies.
There are some cracking lines of humour in this book and the translator did an excellent job on them...along with the rest of the book. It is, I hope at least and am lead to believe, perfectly translated. There were no awkward phrases or things I didn't really get.
When it comes to the characters, some were hateful, some were desperate, some were sad, some were lovely, some had no idea what was happening to them and their lives but in all their own special ways, I fell for them all. The language and the people and their development is very delicate and rather beautiful.
The only criticism of this book I have is that some things got a bit too 'literary' for me at times and I'm not very good with all the highfalutin literary concepts that can be bandied about. But I do forgive JS for them.
Defo a book that took me by surprise and that I would suggest people read if they come across it. A very different read for me but one I did indeed enjoy!