|Publisher:||W W Norton & Co Inc|
|Publish Date:||Sep 2012|
|Number of Pages:||532|
|Shipping Weight (in pounds):||2.0|
|Product in Inches (L x W x H):||6.4 x 1.6 x 9.3|
Mark Rent on should have been the first of his generation to make it out of government housing and do something with his life. Instead, a dalliance with heroin begins a long downward spiral. This prequel to Welsh's seminal 1993 Trainspotting shows how those characters first got into their dire straits. The story hops among multiple narrators and is filled with Scottish slang and phonetic spellings, which is at first disconcerting.
Soon, however, the text develops a poetic rhythm similar to Anthony Burgess's A Clockwork Orange. The author further establishes Edinburgh's bleak mood during the early years of Thatcherism by breaking up the narrative with straightforward factual chapters that describe how the Conservative government's policy of economic austerity and erosion of workers' rights engendered a desperation among the lower classes that made dropping out and becoming a heroin addict seem like an understandable lifestyle choice.
Verdict: Recommended for fans of gritty European fiction and drug lit.
[See Prepub Alert, 3/19/12.] - Peter M. Petruski, Cumberland Cty. Lib. Syst., Carlisle, PA,
(c). Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Mark Rent on’s life seems to be on track: university, pretty girlfriend, even social success. But, in this prequel to Trainspotting, after the death of his younger brother, Rent falls apart and starts hanging around with his old pals, including Sick Boy, Spud, and Begbie, and being drawn irresistibly into their wacked-out plans.
Set against 1980s Thatcher-era Edinburgh—with its high unemployment, low expectations, and hard-to-come-by money and drugsIrvine Welsh’s colorful crew lunges from one darkly hilarious misadventure to the next. Gritty, moving, and exhilarating, Skagboys paints their dizzying downward spiral with scabrous humor and raw language.
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