Jayne Charles's Reviews > Trainspotting

Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
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's review
Jul 26, 11

The posters advertising the film were all over the London Underground when I was working there nearly 20 years ago. Though I never saw the film, I approached the book with some trepidation many years later, those images still in my mind. I expected something bleak, tough to read, a bit depressing. I was wrong - this is laugh-out-loud funny, and once you get your head around its fragmented structure, and the shifting narrative voice, it's a gripping tale, fundamentally following one man's attempts to get off hard drugs. There were many many dark sections - the haunting visions experienced by the main character when he goes 'cold turkey' for example, but these are set against some superb humour (the Neil Diamond medley comes to mind straight away). The book is written entirely in Scottish dialect, which can be a bit difficult to follow, but puts a Scottish accent in your head right away. It also boasts perhaps the highest c-word count of any book I have read to date.

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