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The Rotters' Club by Jonathan Coe
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's review
Oct 15, 11

The Rotters Club offers an interesting story of teenage life in Britain in the mid seventies with strikes, the IRA, Thatcher and even a wee bit of punkrock as the background setting. While the main protagonist is Benjamin Rotter, different storylines from his friends and relatives make up an integral part of the story as well. Coe uses a mix of writing styles, from narrative to interviews, letters, reviews and even a fair portion of stream of consciousness (that one was the hardest to swallow). He doesn't lose himself in endless descriptions or heavy prose and the storyline keeps a steady pase. While the subject is anything but hilarious there's a fair bit of humour to be found. Most of it is satirical by nature, other parts ache towards Ben Elton (for example how Sam Chase deals with his wife's lover).
Class struggle, getting laid, dealing with a growing economic crisis.. Coe offers all.
If this book taught me anything, it taught me that the teenage years, in spite of it's puberal concerns, are something to be cherished, but the seventies in the Uk, they were shit.

Awesome book!
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