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Following on from The Rotters Club time has now moved forward to the 1990’s and a new Blair-ite Britain is about to come into being with Benjamin Trotter’s brother an MP in the heart of New Labour. We follow Benjamin’s life through his own thoughts and those involved in his life. Although a little too neatly tied up at the end this is still a great follow up to the previous novel.
May 2010 Guest Editor John Boyne on Jonathan Coe...
A great novelist. Quirky subject matters, surprising characters, eccentric plots. The kind of writer who can leave the reader laughing out loud, a rare gift. The pair of novels The Rotters’ Club and The Closed Circle are modern masterpieces.
Jonathan Coe's previous novel, The Rotters' Club, was a novel of innocence: a nostalgic, humorous evocation of adolescent life in 1970s Britain. The Closed Circle is its mirror image: a novel of experience. On Millennium night, with Blair presiding over a superficially cool, sexed-up new version of the country, Benjamin Trotter finds himself watching the celebrations on his parents' TV in the same Birmingham house in which he grew up. He is watching, in fact, his younger brother, Paul, now a bright young New Labour MP who has bought wholeheartedly into the Blairite dream. Neither of them can know that their lives are about to implode.Set against the backdrop of Britain's racial and social tensions and the country's increasingly compromised role in America's 'war against terrorism', The Closed Circle shuttles between London and Birmingham, taking in fat cats, media advisers and political protestors. As its characters struggle to make sense of the perennial problems of love, vocation and family in a changing world, it offers a bitter-sweet conclusion to the unfinished business of The Rotters' Club.
Praise for The Closed Circle:
'Spectacular. Coe's finest achievement since What a Carve Up!'
Time Out Wonderful, hilarious
'... so appealing that the last cruel thing about it is the ending'
'Superbly funny, extremely readable, entertaining ... keeps the pages turning'
'As funny as anything Coe has written'
The Times Literary Supplement
'Richly drawn. Coe has succeeded in accomplishing that rare feat: a pair of novels that combine the addictive quality of the best soap operas with a basic cultural integrity'
Independent on Sunday
Publication date: 19/05/2008
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
|Publication date:||19th May 2008|
|Publisher:||Penguin Books Ltd|
|Genres:||eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,|
|Categories:||Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),|
Jonathan Coe was born in Birmingham in 1961. Expo 58 is his tenth novel. The previous nine are all available in Penguin: The Accidental Woman, A Touch of Love, The Dwarves of Death, What a Carve Up! (which won the 1995 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize), The House of Sleep (which won the 1998 Prix Medicis Etranger), The Rotters' Club (winner of the Everyman Wodehouse Prize), The Closed Circle, The Rain Before It Falls and The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim. His biography of the novelist B.S. Johnson, Like a Fiery Elephant, won the 2005 Samuel Johnson Prize for best non-fiction book of the year.More About Jonathan Coe