Number 11, by Jonathan Coe

One of the characters in the book had a husband who'd researched old films. One of his notes is on the film "What a Whopper":

Lame British comedy, she read, about a bunch of beatniks who travel to Loch Ness to build a model of the monster.
1962. Sequel to "What a Carve Up!(1961)? Not really. Two of the same actors.
Sequels which are not really sequels. Sequels where the relationship to the original is oblique, slippery.

And that is a hint at what this book's about - it's a sort of sequel to What a Carve Up! in that a couple of the characters appeared in that book. It also mentions a "film writer called Terry Worth", who I think may have been in House of Sleep. But it's now 4 months since I read it so I'm not remembering it that well..

It was a really good book - I read it very quickly, spilt wine on it, so bought a new copy to return to the library, and I've got the wine-stained book which I indend to re-read soon.

Unlike closed circle, he's not shy of using real names. He doesn't explicitly name I'm a celebrity but doesn't attempt to pretend it's anything else and later on when talking about winshaw prize says that Tracy emin and Richard Dawkins will be at the ceremony rather than saying "a prominent abstract artist" etc.

I thought the ending was a bit of a disappointment but perhaps that was because I was rushing it and missed some connections. But it didn't end as neatly as I'd expected.

A couple of policemen in it were good cameos - one of them (Capes, I think) tried to get people to call him "The Caped Crusader" but no-one else did; that felt like David Nobbs. There was also a good nickname for the sergeant called Nathaniel.

Completed : 2-March-2016

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