February 28, 2007

Company Loyalist

Have been on a bit of a Faber binge recently.

First of all I read David Peace's "Damned Utd," which tells the story of Brian Clough's 43 (44?) days in charge of Leeds United in 1974 ('73? As you can tell, the details have really stuck). Although, to be fair, it tells the internal story, as events take place very much from Ol' Big 'Ead's point of view. The results are absolutely inspired. It's a massive achievement that, stylistically, it's very much a David Peace book (Lots of. Very. Short. Sentences. And italics) but that you also feel the Spirit of Clough (and often the Spirits of Clough) leaking off the page. From now on the name "Don Revie" will send a cold shiver through me.

Anyway, it's been featured everywhere, so I'm not telling you anything you don't know, nor in a way that will enlighten you. I leant it to my sister, who I was visiting at the time and will report back her opinions as someone with no love of football when and if I receive them. In return, she leant me "Snow" by Orhan Pamuk, which is another book which everyone else in the world has probably already read. It was beautiful and moving as well as intricate and clever and deserves much better than to be treated as some sort of marker in a perceived battle between East and West.

Incidentally, these were both authors I'd tried before and not got on with ("GB84" and "My Name Is Red," respectively) so perhaps I'm improving as a human being. Or a reader, anyway.

No comments: