Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 20 May 2010.
A dark and gripping story about friendships and old rivalries. The summer heat makes for an uncomfortable time both physically and mentally in this compelling tale.
Set over a long weekend in East Anglia, Blake Morrison’s new novel is the chilling story of a rivalrous friendship – as told with deceptive casualness by the narrator, Ian. It opens with a surprise phone call from an old university friend, inviting Ian and his wife, Em, for a few days by the sea. Their hosts, Ollie and Daisy, are a golden couple, and the scene is set for sunlit relaxation. But dangerous tensions quickly emerge.
In taut, lucid prose, with flashes of wit and moments of troubling uncertainty, Blake Morrison perfectly conveys the stifling atmosphere of a remote cottage in the hottest days of summer. Ominous revelations from Ian’s past slowly intrude. And his rivalry with Ollie intensifies as they resurrect a seemingly forgotten bet made twenty years before. Each day becomes a series of challenges for higher and higher stakes, setting in train actions that will have irreversible consequences.
The Last Weekend is a deftly crafted page-turner, where little can be taken for granted and nothing is quite as it seems. It offers a dark, haunting tale of friendship, sexual passion and jealousy – and confirms Blake Morrison’s reputation as one of Britain’s most talented writers.
Ian and Em are invited to visit old friends Ollie and Daisy for a summer bank holiday in Suffolk. What could be nicer than a few sunny bucolic days, drinking, eating and catching up, by the sea? But what starts off as a seemingly fun-filled gathering, quickly disintegrates, as old passions and rivalries are stirred. As the sultry heat adds pressure to the building tension, a gentle bet between Ian and his host grows slowly out of hand. The narrator, Ian, is less than straightforward with his facts, forcing us to read between the lines, and in so doing, we discover a very murky tale beneath the surface. Pacy and gripping, this wonderfully atmospheric tale moves inexorably towards the shocking climax as inevitably as the rainstorm that follows these last heady days of summer.
Publication date: 06/05/2010
Publisher: Chatto & Windus an imprint of Vintage
|Publication date:||6th May 2010|
|Publisher:||Chatto & Windus an imprint of Vintage|
|Genres:||eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,|
Born in Skipton, Yorkshire, Blake Morrison is the author of bestselling memoirs, When Did You Last See Your Father? (winner of the J.R.Ackerley Prize for Autobiography and the Esquire Award for Non-Fiction) and Things My Mother Never Told Me ('the must read book of the year' - Tony Parsons), one novel and a study of the Bulger case, As If. He is also a critic, journalist, librettist and poet. He teaches Creative Writing at Goldsmiths College, and lives in South London with his family.More About Blake Morrison