I have very high expectations for it – if it doesn’t go into my top ten favourite novels I’ll be disappointed. It’s notoriously difficult to get into though, and the “plain English” brigade will find much to get in a froth about. I’m only four pages in but there’s already been at least one spectacularly unusual sentence. Hopefully I’ll be back to rave about it in a week or two!
I bought a Mojo lately cause it had the Jam on the cover and inside was a review of this book.
I really enjoyed the introduction. It was a phenomenon first driven by a prurient, thrill-starved readership (office workers reading about juvenile delinquents as imagined by hacks) that later attracted insider writers (the “delinquents” themselves) and then branched out into various wacky subgenres (hippie detectives). I’m going to mine it for obscure authors.
There are lots of colour photos of the cover art, which is good. It’s very well laid out – it isn’t infested with sidebars and boxes and what have you – and equally easy to dip into or read in a linear fashion, which is what I’m going to do. It covers the USA, UK and Australia (I think the editors are Australian) in a series of themed chapters that each examine a few books in depth. The UK sections range from outrageous shite like Richard Allen to the excellent Laura del Rivo. It looks like a very good read indeed and I commend it to the BCB house!