lucky little cat's Reviews > Number 11

Number 11 by Jonathan Coe
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Witty and sparkling satire of modern life zeroes in on London to wonderful effect.

Outsider artist Josep Baquè (1895-1967) gets a shout-out in Jonathan Coe's novel Number 11. Do NOT go down to the basement. Ever.
Here's the only novel ever where a food bank is a major rendezvous point. Burning questions: Can Lady Gunn really expand her Chelsea mansion's basement eleven storeys? (Including bowling alley, home theater, pool with palm trees and one spacious empty level just in case.) Will the Gunn's lovely tutor, Alison, manage to de-snobify young Lucas Gunn sufficiently for him to pass his Oxford entrance interview? Has the influential Winshaw family really found the algorithm for quantifying both wonder and fear, thereby monstrously exploiting each for mind-boggling profit? Will DC Pilbeam's comedy-history theory of crime-solving pay off? Will one-hit-wonder Val ever recover from getting voted off the island? Coe brings all the narrative strands together beautifully, and my only complaint is that this novel ended much too soon.
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Reading Progress

August 30, 2018 – Started Reading
August 30, 2018 – Shelved
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: underdogs-n-decent-folks-unite
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: all-time-favorites
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: books-b-might-like
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: deserves-more-popularity
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: lgbtq-plus-exploration
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: it-s-funny
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: literary-fiction-love
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: read-again-and-again
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: read-in-2018
August 31, 2018 – Shelved as: uk-au-nz
August 31, 2018 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-3 of 3 (3 new)

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message 1: by carol. (new)

carol. Interesting art! like a cross between Mayan and graffiti-style.

message 2: by lucky little cat (last edited Sep 01, 2018 06:18PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

lucky little cat Good eye! I especially like that it reminds me of the dedicated and obsessive doodling that we all did in high school.

Favorite inspiration: Monty Python's Terry Gilliam cited marginalia--doodling on illuminated manuscripts by 13th-century choirboys--as the source of some of his favorite satiric images
There would be that one guy who made all the rest of us properly feel like doodling amateurs. :D

message 3: by carol. (new)

carol. True that, though I went in for more maze-like and less concrete imagery.

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