From the Booker Prizewinning James Kelman, comes a road trip through the American South
'The truth is he didn't care how long he was going away. Forever would have suited him. It didn't matter it was America.'
Murdo, a teenager obsessed with music, wishes for a life beyond the constraints of his Scottish island home and dreams of becoming his own man. Tom, battered by loss, stumbles backwards towards the future, terrified of losing his dignity, his control, his son and the last of his family life. Both are in search of something new as they set out on an expedition into the American South. On the road we discover whether the hopes of youth can conquer the fears of age. Dirt Road is a major novel exploring the brevity of life, the agonising demands of love and the lure of the open road.
It is also a beautiful book about the power of music and all that it can offer. From the understated serenity of Kelman's prose emerges a devastating emotional power.
Patrick Doyle is a 29-year-old teacher in an ordinary school. Disaffected, frustrated and increasingly bitter at the system he is employed to maintain, Patrick begins his rebellion, fuelled by drink and his passionate, unrequited love for a fellow teacher. is the apparently straightforward story of one week in a man's life in which he decides to change the way he lives. Under the surface,however, lies a brilliant and complex examination of class, human culture and character written with irony, tenderness,enormous anger and, above all, the honesty that has marked James Kelman as one of the most important writers in contemporary Britain.
Passionate, exhilarating and darkly humorous, "The Burn" is an extraordinary collection of short stories by a master of paranoia and an unsurpassed prose stylist.
The inspired, insightful and intensely absorbing new novel from one of the most important literary writers working today.
Her boyfriend said she was quirky but it was more than that. Some things were important in life. You had to fight for them. Helen was prepared for that. Only she wasn't as strong as people thought. She tried to be but didn't always succeed. Nobody does, not all the time.
Trust, love, friendship; the lives of others, relationships; parents, children, lovers; and death, and the rich, and poor; safety, security; home and homelessness. The ordinary stuff of life but extraordinary too when you think about it. As Helen did, each waking hour, as day follows dawn, till that strangest of moments on the way home from work this tall, skinny down-at-heel guy crossed the road in front of her taxi. Brian? Her long-lost brother? How could it be? But it was his shape, his way of moving, his very presence. Could it be?
So begins this twenty-four hours in the life of this ordinary young woman, as ordinary, as unique, as each and every one of us.
A brilliant collection of stories set in the tenements and cheap casinos of Glasgow, Manchester and London.
James Kelman's first collection of short stories — as fresh and sharp as when they first appeared from US publisher Puckerbrush Press. Set among the tenements and bedsits of Glasgow, they shine a light on the exploits of young and old. James Kelman had been writing since 1967 and by 1971 had enough stories for a book. In 1973, was published and the rest is history. The US edition has never been out of print.
Tammas is 20, a loner and a compulsive gambler. Unable to hold a job for long, his life revolves around Glasgow bars, living with his sister and brother-in-law, betting shops, and casinos. Sometimes Tammas wins, more often he loses. But gambling gives him as good a chance as any of discovering what he seeks from life since society offers no prospect of a more fulfilling alternative.
James Kelman’s triumph in Kieron Smith, boy is to bring us completely inside the head of a child and remind us what strange and beautiful things happen in there.
Here is the story of a boyhood in a large industrial city during a time of great social change. Kieron grows from age five to early adolescence amid the general trauma of everyday life — the death of a beloved grandparent, the move to a new home. A whole world is brilliantly realized: sectarian football matches; ferryboats on the river; the unfairness of being a younger brother; climbing drainpipes, trees, and roofs; dogs, cats, sex, and ghosts.
This is a powerful, often hilarious, startlingly direct evocation of childhood.
Giving voice to the dispossessed and crafting stories of lives held in the balance, James Kelman reaches us all. Penetrating deeply into the hearts, minds, and desperation of characters who find themselves in everyday situations-in the hospital, at a bus stop, in a living room with the endless roar of the vacuum cleaner and a distant wife-Kelman follows their streams of consciousness and brings their worries to life. With honesty and dark humor, he confronts the issues of language, class, politics, gender, and age-identity in all its forms.
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