Book: The Dwarfs of Death by Jonathan Coe

Book: The Dwarfs of Death by Jonathan Coe

My first Jonathan Coe book. I know.

I bought it as it’s against my law to go be in Edinburgh and not buy a book from Fopp. I actually bought three as an author package, so this is an intro to this long established, local author. (Well, he was bought up in Birmingham, anyway)

The main character William – not Bill – is sharing a (council) flat with his friend’s sister, is in a band he’s not really into, witnesses a murder, kind of goes on the run and of course, unrequited love has to feature. Madeleine is high maintenance and thinks a ticket to an Andrew Lloyd Webber gig is a regular Saturday night and William wonders why she will never let him stay the night. After SIX MONTHS!

He finds the ALW stuff dull, although wants to be a serious pianist rather than in the rock ‘n’ roll world he finds himself in, surrounded by dubious characters.

This is published in 1990 so it’s quite strange reading about a world before mobile phones, the internet and laptops.

It’s only when I’ve read it I learn that the author himself describes this as his ‘weakest novel’. However, I found this early piece of work an easy read and I’m expecting better stuff from the other two books!

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