Vince pilots the Mercedes through Blackheath. This is not a large book, but one should take his time reading to savor his language, his great skill in crafting amazingly simple stories of everyday people. It is the story of a small group of friends, drinking buddies and neighbors, who take the ashes of one of them from London to Margate to throw them into the ocean, in accordance with the wishes of the deceased, Jack, a butcher who had been about to retire. He has to be to be able to get into the skin of so many characters and portray them so distinctively. He borrowed money from Vince, without telling him what he needed it for and gave it to Ray to bet it on a long shot race for Amy. There are the new hipster pubs with craft beer and a cosmopolitan atmosphere, and then right next to them, there is an old man pub. I think the problem is actually not that they are boring but that they are not authentic.
We should flay and mock our authors for the right sins not the wrong ones, and dullness is the one unforgivable transgression. One could be forgiven for expecting a harrowing tale similar to the Long Last Orders is a strange one for a Booker Prize. Vince had had an infatuation with Lenny's daughter, Sally that lasted through most of his childhood. All of the characters, with the exception of Vic--which is interesting in and of itself and for whom I have a theory--are estranged in some way from the people that they love, mainly their children, and it seems that they are all on a journey of some kind to either rectify that estrangement or come to terms with that estrangement. The story of their pilgrimage is endearingly human, sometimes tense, often funny, almost always full of Jack, a Butcher and propper up of the bar at his local alongside his mates Raysy, Lenny, Vic and Vince, Jack's unofficially adopted son dies. A Google search tells me it is one of the oldest areas of south London, but even that doesn't tell me what I think locals would know. So this is the story.
New beginnings can't erase what came before, nor can we start over and become new people. Each short chapter is a reflection conjured by the death of Jack Dodds and his request that his ashes be thrown into the sea. On a bleak spring day, four men meet in their favorite pub in a working-class London neighborhood. Swift's novel triumphed over five other books, all of which had been warmly received by the critics, embraced to various degrees by the book-buying public and considered by literary commentators to be reasonable contenders for the top prize. Snivelling into a filthy handkerchief. For all its turns and judders, it reads rather simply and matter of factly, oddly comfortably.
You'll notice that most little things in this book are expanded upon at some point and you'll also find yourself grasping seemingly impenetrable bits of slang. In the end, I liked it but This is one of those books where I could not decide if I like it until after I had finished reading it and thought about the book. Since I grew up close to this part of London, it was speech which was well known to me, and I felt that I knew these people and shared something of their background and histories. Recognition grew from small accretions of signs as the story progressed, and very soon I was familiar with the particular character traits of particular speakers: Lenny's antagonism towards Vince, for example; Vince's obsession with cars; and Vic's dry, matter-of-fact view of life and death, and his odd sense of humour. Waterland was set in The Fens; it is a novel of landscape, history and family, and is often cited as one of the outstanding post-war British novels and has been a set text on the English Literature syllabus in British schools. For various reasons, Ray was probably the closest of Jack's friends.
I had to reread this for my book club, and chose the audio version. Some live across the street. His wife also figures prominently in the narrative. Lenny and Vince appear to be congenial to each other. Ray 'Lucky' Johnson: an insurance clerk, who has an uncanny ability to wager on the right horses.
I found it often enough insightful, poignant, or beautifully phrased, yet always real rather than manufactured. Ian McEwan : What was that? There is regret and anger, but also, underneath and despite it all, attachment, dependence, and love. We are living it all at the same time. The plot is interesting too. He wanted to get away from the family business. It took me some time to figure out who everyone was in relation to other characters in the book.
Last Orders shows Graham Swift writing at his best, and he well deserves the nomination for the Booker Prize. Played by in the movie. In 2001 it was adapted for the film by Australian writer and director. العلاقات معقدة ومتشابكة ومليئة الخداع وخيبة الأمل ذكرتني بقصة فيلم من ألف الى باء والذي عرض مؤخرا في مهرجان ابوظبي السينمائي Upon reading the premise, I remember that the film has been watched: Dedication: For Al Opening quotes: But man is a Noble Animal, splendid in ashes, and pompous in the grave. It took me some time to figure out who everyone was in relation to other characters in the book. Shared memories overlap as the trip to Margate progresses, and in the forced intimacy of the car, old grudges re-surface and cause unexpected diversions. There are added bits of detail.
This soon turned into a short lasting affair that no one else knew of except Vic. But faced with the blunt reality of death, these memories seem like small eddies in the flow of events which have brought them to this present moment. Amy Dodds: Jack's wife, who declines to join the men when they scatter Jack's ashes. Last Orders is a strange one for a Booker Prize. He gets out with Jack's ashes; the rest of the group has no idea why they are there or what is happening.
The chapters are voiced by the four men who take Jack Dodd's ashes to the sea and by his wife, Amy Dodd. A group of friends is mourning their friend Jack's death at the pub. There's a point where one of the characters--I think it's Ray--reflects that Vic knows who he is and has never wanted to be anyone else or do another job. This is a technically accomplished novel, interesting characterization, but it just didn't do it for me. It is published by Knopf in the United States.