Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Johnny Come Home

Last Sunday, I was in the mood to read. I grabbed Jake Arnott's latest novel Johnny Come Home from the shelf where it had been collecting dust for almost three years.

I have no idea how it could remain there so long. I loved Arnott's gangland trilogy, consiting of The Long Firm, He Kills Coppers and truecrime, which was the sophisticated fusion of gangsterism, show business, politics and gay culture. I particularly liked that they were without this coming-out or coming-of-age thing that is often involved when there is a gay storyline. The gangster boss just happened to be a bender and nobody dared to mess with him because of this (if I recall correctly).

Whatever, I started the book on Sunday and finished it yesterday. It has turned out to be a page turner. The Guardian review covers my thoughts quite good. For the once who just want the synopsis:

It's 1972 and as the dreams of the sixties give way to anger and political unrest, the charismatic anarchist Declan O'Connell commits suicide, leaving his boyfriend Pearson and fellow squatter Nina to try to make sense of what has happened. Enter Sweet Thing, a streetwise rent boy, who has an uncanny hold over glam rock star Johnny Chrome; and in the wings lurks Detective Sergeant Walker of the newly formed Bomb Squad, who knows more about O'Connell than anyone ever suspected. The course of all their lives is about to change forever -- for better and for worse.

Jake Arnott's fifth novel, The Devil's Paintbrush will come out by the end of this month. It is set in Paris in 1903, and deals with an encounter between disgraced former British Army officer Sir Hector Macdonald and the occultist Aleister Crowley. It's ordered.

1 comment:

Expat Traveler said...

Your next book sounds exciting.. I've had trouble reading but I think it's all of the activities I do and all of the longing to be back across the pond that distracts me from it all. I used to love reading so much while in Switzerland. I mean I don't even have a tv, so what's my excuse!!!!