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London Fields

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  7,477 ratings  ·  514 reviews
There is a murderer, there is a murderee, and there is a foil.

Everyone is always out there searching for someone and something, usually for a lover, usually for love. And this is a love story.

But the murderee - Nicola Six - is searching for something and someone else: her murderer. She knows the time, she knows the place, she knows the motive, she knows the means. She just
Paperback, 470 pages
Published 2003 by Vintage (first published 1989)
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What a fun fucking book. I blew off everything today (and, well, most of the week) just to read this book, because it was that fucking fun. God, I loved this book. I just read it nonstop, and when the recurring irritation that is my life did tear me away, I kept thinking about what I'd read, and just ached to go back to read it some more.... I went at this book hard, folks, and now that I'm finished, I feel like I barely can walk across the room. Maybe this qualifies as Too Much Information, but ...more
mark monday
Many thanks to this review for providing the inspiration!

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Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh! Gosh!

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I haven’t read a book this good in really, *really* long time.

And we’re not talking about oh-I-can’t-wait-to-get-home-so-I-can-read-this
Glenn Russell

Samson Young, first-person narrator of this Martin Amis novel, is a somewhat jaded, frequently sarcastic and acerbic 40-something intellectual literary writer from, not surprisingly, New York City. But his hard-edged Big Apple voice is absolutely pitch-perfect for the story he is telling, a story involving a host of memorable and very human characters, not to mention a couple of super-human characters: an Incredible Hulk-like toddler and one doozy of a MAN MAGNET, and, yes, indeed, that’s spelle
Paul Bryant

At the top there is the Monarchy and the aristocracy. They're all still there, no one has gone away. The 14th Duke of Banffshire and all the scurvy crew. The only good news is - they're not allowed to hunt foxes any more ! Yay - one and a half cheers for democracy! So that's the Upper Class.

Next step down is the complicated Middle Class which is divided into three :

Upper middle : these are your professions, of course. Judges, lawyers, bankers, etc. There was a radio inter
Oct 28, 2014 Kemper rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Kemper by: Anthony Vacca
”This is the story of a murder. It hasn't happened yet. But it will. (It had better.) I know the murderer, I know the murderee. I know the time, I know the place. I know the motive (her motive) and I know the means. I know who will be the foil, the fool, the poor foal, also utterly destroyed. I couldn't stop them, I don't think, even if I wanted to. The girl will die. It's what she always wanted. You can't stop people, once they start. You can't stop people, once they start creating.

What a gift.
First published in 1989, London Fields is now often considered to be Martin Amis's magnum opus. The New York Times described it as a "virtuoso depiction of a wild and lustful society" and a "large book of comic and satirical invention", which succeeds as a "picaresque novel rich in its effects".The Guardian was a little less positive, and called the book "a cheat. A con-trick", writing that "from start to finish, all 470 pages of it, it's an elaborate tease." But the paper couldn't brush it off ...more
Krok Zero
My first Amis. Didn't disappoint! I'm not sure it pulled off its staggering ambitions but it's very easy to enjoy, if you enjoy elaborately witty studies of human perversity and pain.

Character-driven is a term you often hear applied to fiction. It applies here more than usual, and in a different sense. The characters are stock types that Amis has elevated to the realm of literary internality without really changing their status as stock types. They're familiar to anyone familiar with crime stori
This book just has it all.

Um. That's not very specific. I suppose I'd better say what "it" is. Well... off the top of my head: an engaging femme fatale, an equally engaging anti-hero - Keith Talent is an asshole's asshole - a dangerous baby, psychic powers, explicit descriptions of sex and competitive darts (though not both at the same time), references to nuclear and climate-related apocalypses, witty and stylish writing. Pause for breath. I know I'm missing a bunch of things.

A plot? An endin
London Fields is a book with a plot so pointless it made me angry, and a cast of blatant stereotypes. It's distinguished by some flourishes of wonderful writing, and the presence of one character who is one of my favourite creations of modern British fiction.

Initially, there is plenty to like. The narrator – a failed American writer on a house-swap in London – has an engaging line in self-doubt, a brooding sense of millennial disaster, and a neat turn of phrase. The traffic-clogged, grimy street
Michael Shilling
People often say Martin Amis in the brilliant guy at the party you avoid, but Amis actually can roll a great joint and cut a fine rail. Also he knows secrets about the host that you'd have never suspected. His breath is terrible, though, and he keeps trying to kiss you.
Congratulations, little 470-page tome. You outbid Ada in the little push-pull contest I had going on all evening. It was either you or her. You won. I hope that you don't disappoint me. You won't disappoint me.

Your author is, according to the jacket copy, "a force unto himself".

I imagine your author looks in the mirror, flashes his teeth and nods, "I am a force unto myself!" before going about his day, drawling in American to his American wife, "I think I'd really like to hit America--no, no,
Sep 25, 2008 Jonathan rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Misanthropes
This incoherent tale oozes malignant intent and world weary cynicism. None of the main characters have any positive traits whatsoever. They are variously weak, selfish, greedy, naive, manipulative and violent. The story is punctuated by the self-conscious musings of a narrator who is both seperate from, and part of, the story. These interruptions become grating after a while and are superflous to the narrative.

Amis's representation of Keith Talent serves as a crude representation of the tabloid
Composição da narrativa:
Testosterona - 80%
Progesterona - 20%

Interesse despertado pela leitura:
Aborrecimento - 70%
Entusiasmo – 30%

Expressões visíveis durante o processo:
Atenção – 70%
Dispersão – 30%

Sons audíveis enquanto a sujeita olhava o livro:
Bocejo - 90%
Riso – 10%

Empatia com as personagens:
Bébé Marmaduke – 99%
Restantes – 1%

Desistênca a cerca de 60% do final.

Nota: Marmaduke é um super bébé que morde, arranca olhos e bate, forte e feio, em todos que se aproximam. Um delírio!
MJ Nicholls
A highly engaging novel from the Dean of Bloated, Ponderous, Semi-Comic Cerebral Wank.

Martin's novels are renowned for their "composite" qualities, i.e. he writes three separate books and mashes them together. London Fields is a "profound" murder mystery, a scathing satire on hack writers (no surprises there), and a "state of Britain" epic all at once.

The end result is as uneven, stylistically overindulgent and frustratingly dense as you could expect from Amis. But his characters are very entert
The story is about a murder that is going to happen, that book is about 450 pages (21 hours) leading up to that event. You know who is going to die, so that is not a secret. Nikki Six knows she is going to die and accepts that. She convinces one main character she is a virgin, while in reality being quite the slut. She has a fetish that she lets the narrator in on and in her own mind goes on to compare it as Cygnus X1, a binary star system in which one of the stars is now a black hole. One gives ...more
Consider me dazzled, yet the very flurry of distorting mirrors and laser images reveal more about Mr. Amis and England than about The Novel (as it were) or The End -- in whatever eschatological capacity is extended to the present day punter. The figure of Keith Talent is amazingly realized, aside from the slurs, the belches and the nudges, there is something monstrously vivid in his haunts (both senses) and struggles. He may be Martin's Bloom.

Nicola Six's machinations were as uncomfortable for t
Wow -- this was so not my thing. And it wasn't that I was offended. I was just not impressed. It had so much unrealized potential... no, that's not it. Some of the ideas, like some of the characterization and plot devices, could have developed in a more edited way in someone else's hands. But there was nothing unrealized about this book. He realized the hell out of it, and then some. That's the problem. Maybe it's that whole post-modern-you-get-to-know-everything-and-then-some kind of thing, but ...more
May 25, 2007 Eric rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves the craft
I loved this book and it is one of my top ten favorites of all time. The novel is sheer virtuousity, and what might suffer under the weight of showiness and pretense really works here because at the end of it all, it is so well written. And the book turns on you, an unexpected ending that made me read the book a second time after the first to see it with more narrative clarity--thematically, the reader and the protagonist suffer from the same limited omniscience—they are in it together; a positi ...more
Martin Amis, you are such a tease!
Martin, Martin, Martin. I remember this from reading Money: you overstay your welcome, Martin.

I was right there with you for 300, 350 pages, really, even the weird sex stuff the femme fatale fantasy which strikes me as a bit more of the inside of your head than I want to see, the whole nine yards. I was good, I was prepared to cut you every kind of slack -- the cute author who's also our narrator thing, some pretty disgusting characters, the excess of Marmaduke, the coyness about the world situa
It's a Martin Amis book. You will feel kind of defiled and filthy after reading it, but also sharper and challenged. I read this book aloud to my girl years back, and for months afterward we would both horse around and try to talk like Keith Talent. He really is one of the most memorable in a long line of Amis scumbags: Rather dangerous, but the book sort of builds him up, deflates him and makes him seem rather pathetic, though not as much so as Money's John Self, for example.

The scenario here i
William Thomas
Martin Amis suffers from the same syndrome as his father. Kingsley Amis Syndrome. Also known as Ken Kesey Syndrome but not to be confused with Harper Lee Syndrome. A stellar first novel ala the Rachel Papers and then a steep decline into a babbling imbecile who more or less writes as a way to mentally masturbate and force you, the reader, to watch.

This book was little more than a bumbling, mumbling jumble of words. And not very many words, at that. Because within the first twenty pages he uses
London Fields, a hodgepodge of narrations and narrators, glides off a plot whose skeleton is concurrently triptych, murder intrigue, and savage burlesque. Our ostensible author-in-charge is Samson Young, the typical artist manqué, frustrated with his twenty-year long inability to conjure a worthy novel, but pining no longer, for Samson serendipitously stumbles upon the perfect tale: one that quite literally writes itself. Soon after meeting Keith Talent—an oxymoron in both name and spirit, a che ...more
Nov 16, 2014 Max rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
Author has a great knowledge of vocabulary. Some characters are a bit too slimy for me to want to spend 470( sometimes dense) pages with. Ex: Keith Talent steals from gullible old women, ingnores/ cheats on his wife with one of his numerous girlfriends(one of which is a 16 year old prostitute: managed by her mother), gets drunk all the day long. Amis has his moments of insight and there are some moving and excitable passages but just as often he overplays his hand with excessively flowery and se ...more
A hyperbolic sledgehammer of a book, vicious and vitriolic. It is a wonderfully inventive post-modern crime story, with a broad and vivid cast of London life, that sadly rings a little too true. I'm not a big Amis fan, but I loved London Fields.

While written in the late 80s, it still feels highly relevant today. Perhaps it would have seemed less so in the middle of Blair's premiership, but the new age of austerity suits book just fine. The dread of imminent apocalypse (a touch of JG Ballard the
This book and I have quite a history. I'm a big fan of ex-Ministry member Chris Connelly's solo work and he mentions this book in two of his songs ("London Fields" and "Nicola 6") which perked my interest in Amis. I started reading this in June of 2006 and gave up as I had no idea where it was going. I LOVED the atmosphere of it but it felt sort of like the book equivalent of a British Wong Kar-Wai making an 8 hour movie about London low lifes. But I couldn't get it out of my mind and came back ...more
I like some of Amis's book and he knows how to write a dazzling sentence, but this is a book full of mean spirited characters and a snobbishness towards the working class that predates the "chav" phenomenon by almost twenty years. Keith Talent, lauded in some quarters as a brilliantly drawn depiction of a oafish bully, is infact one of the most one dimensional and cliched characters I have come across in modern literature. Read "Money" instead.
Paul The Uncommon Reader
Talent: It's what you do with it, isn't it?

In response to criticism of a perceived over-complexity of his 2003 novel Yellow Dog Amis countered with these words: “No one wants to read a difficult literary novel or deal with a prose style which reminds them how thick they are…”, and then goes on to casually mention what he deems to be his own “higher voice”. Much has been made over the years of Martin Amis’s ego – so much so, in fact, that perhaps his loudness and conviction at his own higher cal

In short, this book is a tease from start to finish. But beneath that one-word overview is a craftsman removing any simple use of language or cliche to produce and polish skillful literary, linguistic gold. A true wordsmith. It's difficult not to be in awe as Amis convolutively mixes ideas, impressions & deliciously acquired words to convey tone and scene (mainly at the expense of his characters who are crudely oulined as mere caricatures). The irony is that he fashions his art within the do ...more
I've known prisoners, children, and countless other delinquents. But sorry, I don't give anyone the benefit of the doubt as often as this author needs it. London Fields is a tiresome snarled mess, a Grade A deviant that deserves the literary equivalent of solitary confinement. It's as if Martin Amis was too busy to curb his own cleverness and impulsive meanderings.

Here's the shtick: It's per-apocalypse London and femme fatale Nicola knows she's going to be murdered... but will it be by straight
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Martin Amis is an English novelist, essayist and short story writer. His works include the novels Money, London Fields and The Information.

The Guardian writes that "all his critics have noted what Kingsley Amis [his father] complained of as a 'terrible compulsive vividness in his style... that constant demonstrating of his command of English'; and it's true that the Amis-ness of Amis will be recog
More about Martin Amis...

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“And meanwhile time goes about its immemorial work of making everyone look and feel like shit.” 175 likes
“Love is blind; but it makes you see the blind man; teetering on the roadside . . .” 28 likes
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