Espondent when I finished this book that I literally lay on my bed in the dark in a state of what I can only describe as existential despair *thinking well what do I do now That was how much I enjoyed it so much *well what do I do now That was how much I enjoyed it so much I felt distraught when I knew it was overCompletely addictive and what a fantastic return to form after the lacklustre Expo 58 I read this at breakneck speed barely able to tear myself away from it It tells interco Farce treats the improbable as probable the impossible as possible George Pierce BakerTrouble is it seems that nothing is impossible Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary I went online to check the date of that appalling incident of the Chinese cockle pickers who died in Morecambe Bay it does play a role in Number 11 and found that someone wants to make it into a musicalAnd while a lot of the British press have gone into meltdown over the fact that a woman shaped human is now leading the country this particular piece of news disappeared Source NHS ended 2015 with the largest deficit in its history three times last year s We seem to be living in a post farce ageSo I have to admire Jonathan Coe for still having a go And at the same time posing some very pertinent uestions about how laughter at public figures might ust remove some of the fully ustified rage that we ought to feel at their callous disregard for the people whose interests they are supposed to represent And writing a damned enjoyable book at the same time Jonathan Coe is always entertaining so it is no surprise that this book is a page turner It is also an incisive satire that says much about the strangeness and ineuality at incisive satire that says much about the strangeness and ineuality at heart of modern Britain This is a seuel to his earlier book What a Carve Up which was part satire of Thatcherite values and part homage to 50s and 60s British film comedies In the earlier book the Winshaw family caricatured many of the venal aspects of the society of the day in the same way as the D Ascoynes in Kind Hearts and Coronets and met the same fate This book has a complicated structure almost a loosely linked set of five novellas exploring a similar set of characters who are effectively heirs of the original Winshaws and meting out the same form of ustice to them The situations Coe places them in allow him to explore aspects of modern society that did not exist at the time of the previous book such as social media reality TV the abuse of migrant workers the way police procedure is influenced by the media and the lives and building aspirations of London s super rich elite He also introduces a further set of film references notably uatermass and the Pit and What a Whopper which was an apparently risible seuel to the What a Carve Up film involving the Loch Ness Monster This makes for a very enjoyable read but
has its flaws of the comedy is Souvenirs de dbauches just too blunt and simplistic the ending seems very silly in a way that was onlyust about forgiveable because of the uatermass reference and the characters are often superficial and symbolic for example the one legged black lesbian on benefits who is constructed as a perfect tabloid target but as Coe himself in a postscript that explains many of the inspirations advertised as an exclusive for the Waterstones paperback edition this book was partly intended as a tribute to the late David Nobbs and in that he has undoubtedly succeeded. City where bankers need cinemas in their basements and others need food banks down the streetIt is Jonathan Coe doing what he does best showing us how we liveIt Has Its Flaws
free download ã eBook or Kindle ePUB è Jonathan CoeWhat s happened to Jonathan Coe Did his publisher insist he write another book and Coe shrugged his shoulders and said Oh if I must Or has he simply run out of inventive steam This book reprises many of the themes that made his previous novels so entertaining and incisive biting satires on all the evils of modern life greed all the evils of modern life greed political ambition and here admittedly he comes up to date and adds a few reality TV bullying on social media and so on So the satire is still there but it s grown so tired Or perhaps Coe has grown so tired Cartoonish characters lazy writing obvious targets attacked without a shred of subtlety and an ending that descends into absurdity Tedious and disappointing This was truly fantastic I d forgotten uite how much I love Jonathan Coe s writing What the what the what now I loved the Jonathan Coe of What a Carve Up and The Rotters Club but this is as far from that intelligent warm humour as you may find yourself on a misty winter s night in Chelsea I can t begin to describe what this book is But it is a mess Maybe Coe was under pressure to produce a book by Penguin and found six notebooks in his drawers and gaffa *taped them together and handed it in to his editor That is about as plausible as the tale he *them together and handed it in to his editor That is about as plausible as the tale he to tell in this book and the ridiculous ending with a complete change of tone halfway through Mismatched stories characters with a half hearted attempt at modern satire of Austerity Britain in which we find ourselves Please Mr Coe find yourself again I miss your writing This is a funny and mildly disturbing state of England and coming of age novel I d only read one previous book by Coe Expo 58 an unrepresentative 1950s set comedy so this is a better example of his usual pattern multiple loosely linked storylines Here the theme is the absurdity of modern culture encompassing many aspects unjust wars the excesses of the uber rich the obsession with celebrity and suspicion and exclusion of those who are different from us The number 11 keeps popping up tooMy favorite parts were a Survivor type reality television show and a laughably over the top prize ceremony banuet At times I had trouble fitting all the pieces together in my mind which reduced the impact but overall
it works The biting critiue never detracts from the characterization and theworks The biting critiue never detracts from the characterization and the ending with its dip into fantasy is a delightful little olt As Blair has mentioned there s a brief reference to What a Carve Up that suggests this is a seuel but no knowledge of the previous book is necessaryInteresting to see that the US edition has been given a subtitle Or Tales That Witness MadnessRelated reading Gorsky by Vesna Goldsworthy London s uber rich Capital by John Lanchester a kaleidoscopic state of England novel Lost for Words by Edward St Aubyn comic discussion of a prize race I was about fifty pages into this book before I realised it was an unexpected seuel to What a Carve Up Jonathan Coe s acclaimed 1994 novel satirising the Thatcher years in Britain which was surprising as I always assumed that book was a standalone Having read What a Carve Up I can tell you that you needn t have read it before picking up Number 11 and even Coe himself seems to be subtly describing this book as Seuels which are not really seuels Seuels where the relationship to the original is obliue slippery p152 Which is. This is a novel about the hundreds of tiny connections between the public and private worlds and how they affect us allIt's about the legacy of war and the end of Accurate The uote above is in reference to What a Whopper a real 1962 Sid James film that loosely connected to the real 1962 Sid James film that loosely connected to the 1961 Sid James film What a Carve Up I ll try to keep the exclamation marks to a minimum here on out but I also really liked Number 11 There isn t much of a plot It s basically an overview of 21st century Britain Rachel a young Oxford graduate who can t find work becomes A follow up to What a Carve Up both In style a social satire on the times mixed with levels of farce and ending with a horror B movie style mass murder of the guilty In characters with the key villains all being linked in some ways to the legacy of the third generation Winshaw s the daughter of Hilary a online columnist in Hilary s tradition Mark s wife who has turned his arms firm into a profit making aggressively entrepreneurial arms clearance business the head of an arts prize set up in Roderick s honour and which awards a prize each year to the best other prize a Lord who is following on in Henry s work to dismantle the NHS and further to put a monetary value on all aspects not ust of health but now of arts and life the director of a food firm which is the largest part of Dorothy s food conglomerate an investment banker colleague of Thomas who took the bank into derivative speculation And even the way in which many of the other characters find their lives and the lives of those they care for negatively impacted by the greed and amorality of the villains In this case the two main protagonists are two childhood friends Rachel and Alison Rachel is initially successful studying at Oxford but ends up as a private tutor to the children of a super rich investment banker and his foreign wife and living *IN THEIR KNIGHSBRIDGE MANSION BEING EXCAVATED *their Knighsbridge mansion being excavated an eleven floor basement which ends up becoming the killer spiders lair Alison it becomes clear is a right wing cliche a black one legged lesbian living on benefits and exposed as a benefits scrounger by Hilary s daughter Issues satirised in the book include Food banksThe super rich and their basementsReality TV Alison s mother a faded ex pop star is lured on to one at short noticeLeft wing stand up comics and their role as a safety valve preventing actual action against the blatant unfairness of what they rail against leading in a sub plot to an online activist who becomes a serial murderer of themThe financial measures used by the NHS to udge of treatments can be fundedChinese immigrant workersThe increasing focus of the police on high profile cases featuring media stars and on their own media coverageAusterityThe bile of online commentators The book can be uneven at times and features lengthy digressions which do not entirely fit an attempt to shoe horn in the death of Dr David Kelly "AND AN ODD STORY ABOUT A MAN OBSESSED WITH " an odd story about a man obsessed with a short film he saw in the 1960s and associates with the stability of his childhood and which after his death causes his wife to be unsentimental with their son so that he does not suffer from the same lethargic nostalgia when he is older Overall though a very enjoyable read This book is a fierce criticism of modern society with its absurdity It s tragic and comic at the same timeIn the short stories that come up with the books Coe faces different themes and heats different literary genres It s however a uick reading I felt so NnocenceIt's about how comedy and politics are battling it out and comedy might have wonIt's about how 140 characters can make fools of us allIt's about living in .