two fantastic books that I wanted to share with you.
I don’t often write reviews, I feel uncomfortable pronouncing my verdict on the work of a fellow author, but what the hell…
Galley Beggar Press’ latest offering, Forbidden Line by Paul Stanbridge is great heft of ebullient, glorious literature. Don and Is embark on a picaresque romp around Essex, their quixotic (yes, that Don) quest (driven by Don’s love for Chance and his obsession with the ‘hyperfine transition of hydrogen’) bringing them into farcical and deranged contact with the contemporary world.
This book is lyrical, beautifully rendered, brilliantly clever, baffling and hilarious, but what struck me most keenly is this is a book about friendship and love and that Don’s life work detailing the ‘hyperfine transition of hydrogen’ is an alchemical remedy for sorrow and loss, as it ‘offers the opportunity for the restitution of all things in the symbolic world, marking as it does, the delusion of temporality.’
Bluemoose stablemate Sharon Duggal’s The Handsworth Times is set in 1981 and riots fume and falter and fester throughout Thatcher’s broken Britain and its inner cities. When a tragedy threatens to destroy the Agarwal family (the characters in this book are fantastically drawn) a riven community comes together. This moving and ultimately uplifting book is a must read for our times, reminding us that we are all connected, that prejudice and division must have no place in our society and that together we are stronger.