Skagboys

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Skagboys

Format:  Hardcover,

532 pages

Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc

Publish Date: Sep 2012

ISBN-13: 9780393088731

ISBN-10: 0393088731

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Book Information

The following content was provided by the publisher.
Marked by Irvine Welsh's scabrous humor and raw Scottish vernacular, Skagboys transports us to 1980s Edinburgh, where the Trainspotting crew is just getting started. Mark Renton has it all: the first in his family to attend university, he has a pretty girlfriend and a great social life. But when economic uncertainties and family problems intervene, Rent succumbs to the defeatism--not to mention the drug use--that has taken hold in Edinburgh's tougher quarters. His friends are responding according to personality. Laid off, Spud Murphy is paralyzed in the face of long-term unemployment. Sick Boy, supreme manipulator of the opposite sex, is scamming and hustling for money and drugs. And meanwhile, psycho Franco Begbie is scaring the hell out of everyone. Darkly humorous, Skagboys gives a gritty and gripping portrait of a time, not unlike ours, when money was scarce, unemployment was high, and drugs seemed the answer.

Specifications

Author:
Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc
Publish Date: Sep 2012
ISBN-13: 9780393088731
ISBN-10: 0393088731
Format: Hardcover
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

Reviews

Review by Library Journal (2012-08-01)

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.

Book description

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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