WILL SELF Feeding Frenzy (Viking £16.99) 0...
While Will Self insists that he is a heavyweight author to reckon with. there can be no denying that his jOurnaIism houses some of his finest writing. Yet. he is now threatening to cancel all that trifling column nonsense to construct the sweeping literary epic he has in him.
Which is actually a shame. Some of the stuff in Feeding Frenzy — written between the years of 1995 and 2000 when his own Substance consumption was at times pretty hectic — really dazzles. For the Wide likes of Building Design and The Observer. he chucked caustic darts at everything from Blair's shaping of Britain to Welsh's portrayal of drug-taking. And with his restaurant reviews. he made himself the object of a vicious vendetta from irate proprietors.
The thing with Self is that he provokes a reaction. Whether his targets are easy or not. it's the writing that c0unts. And in his own Curry-combing, Winnowing' way. he offers more than just food for thought.
AMERICAN DRAMA LARRY BROWN Fay (Black Swan $26.99) I.
Attempting to portray the unpleasant side effects of American idealism. Larry Brown presents a trailer-trash trawl across the Deep South, hot on the heels of the titular Fay. All- American cheerleader ideals clash with Springerisms as Fay — an untamed Lolita whose boots were
made for walking — leaves her dysfunctional backwater life to embark upon a heartrending jOurney to sexual awakening.
Brown's knack for characterisation offers sufficient antidote to the obvious lack of narrative depth. although Fay herself often veers unconvincingly between idiot child and grizzled street ‘ho. The strange result is that despite (or perhaps because of) Brown's disturbingly protective adoration for Fay. we never get to meet her.
Her various love affairs offer poignant moments. but Brown's attempts to create an ‘everywoman' feminist protagonist renders Fay over- romanticised and ephemeral. She is nothing more than a wandering outcast from a Channel 5 TV movie who. on her journey to enlightenment. captivates everyone but the reader.
CULTURAL CRITICISM MIKITA BROTTMAN Meat ls Murder (Creation £16.95) 0..
If you don't know by now that eating people is wrong, I don't suppose this book will help much. All the same. Meat ls Murder does command a kind of icky fascination once you start reading and I did start to feel distinctly queasy at the account of real-life cannibal murders which fills the early chapters of the book.
A little less disturbing are Mikita Brottman's theories on the mythic significance of various novels and films featuring people eaters. From Conrad's Heart Of Darkness, through Silence Of The Lambs. to Zombie Holocaust. Brottman puts
everything in the pot. But while she plays with some fascinating ideas
I about cannibal narratives in our culture.
bringing in Freud. as well as a succession of cultural anthropologists. the book lacks a final thesis. not so much defining a position as making a succession of observations. Ultimately, this makes it all quite hard to digest.
DRUGS ANTHOLOGY HOWARD MARKS The Howard Marks Book Of Dope Stories (Vintage £7.99) a...
Now that the law on cannabis appears to be as relaxed as a dopehead's eyelids. this collection could soon be no more than a quaint slice of social history rather than the radical anti-social tract Howard Marks may have wished it to be. Though, as he insists in his introduction. this is not a call for legalisation. just some stories compiled for their 'interest. rarity. amusement and provocation.‘
And that it is. Split roughly into sections covering the essence. manufacture. distribution and consumption of mind- altering properties, there are fairly predictable insights on disunited states from William Burroughs. Hunter S. Thompson. Aleister Crowley and Mr Nice himself.
But semi-hidden in the fug are writings from Charles Dickens. King James VI and Friedrich Nietzsche while the purely entertaining pieces come from the anti-drug lobby: in particular a hilarious Daily Mirror editorial from the 608 and various campaigners experimenting for the first time.
EVENTS AT BORDERS
SATURDAY 17TH NOVEMBER 7PM
SE RLE CHAPMAN
N(ll|‘.(3 Aiiioiit (iii photographoi Sorta (Uhapiiiaii t alohiatus tho I(}i(?(IS(} ot l‘lS now hook We, The People. Joining him will l)t? sovui'ai toiitiiimtois drawn hot“ the group oi aitists, histoiiaiis, (l( twists and traditional
(:Idtris .‘J’t() provided the ont tor (.hapiiiaii's woiidoitul pit Iuias.
TUESDAY 20TH NOVEMBER 7PM
GLASGOW’S HARD MEN
_J()t)lll(lllf)l l\)()l)t?ll .Jtritioy's now hooL toiitaiiis a host oi tjiippiiitj stoiios culled ll()lll tho ( oiiipiohoiisiva (ll( lll‘lth oi Hit- Iii-laid, Hii- l‘.’(;‘l)lll(} hint-s and The
Sunday Ilt’IH/(l, iavoaiiiitj tho daiLoi sidir at a ( ity (MK (3 plagued with (nine.
SUNDAY 25TH NOVEMBER 2PM
THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS
the long; ostahlishod aiid loi'iiiidahto lll(l|(,‘ hand pailoiiii an (I( ()USlK set from their new album Mink Car.
WEDNESDAY 28TH NOVEMBER IQ—IPM
the Intimidaiy toothall player will ix: signing topics oi his autobiography Blessed. to ensure that trvoiyoiio gots to moot hiiii, Mi Host ((llI only sign t opios oi Blessed.
WEDNESDAY 28TH NOVEMBER 7PM
a... at The Glasgow Royal Concert Hall (tickets £2, only from Borders)”
It ou Have never hoard Ste )huii t‘i iaad tioiii one at his host sirlliiit novels -‘
Y I y .l I
you ham IYIISSUd a huge treat. tho hilarious Mr t‘iy iiiaturs a '.'.’(‘l( oiiit: return to ()lastjou to read trout his novel The Star’s Tennis Balls, tilt: story
of a young man whose l)l|SSlUi (zxistoiit o is turiiad upsidtt down.
THURSDAY 29TH NOVEMBER 7PM
WHO WANTS TO BE A GLASWEGIAN?
itllt l‘llH', 7» runs a trot: (lull in Boiduis ( (iii? hawd on his Ilt hoot Who Wants To Be A Glaswegian?
A tun night out l()l (Illy()ll(,‘ iiitaiostod iii lilt.‘ ( ity.
SATURDAY IST DECEMBER 7PM
HITLER WAS A VEGETARIAN
A r. alto! Ill)” oi siioit stories and llt‘ltll(l < oluiiiiif. ll()IIt tho populai ()I'Llley hasad xiiiftri, Ron t‘or'gusoii. In his \r/ido-iaiitjiiitj aitii tau, KIILWUHIS Kioi'ltrtjaaid turns his (juiiLy gun: on politit iolitjioii, sax, ioothali, the
media and (ontCinpoiaiy < ultum.
THURSDAY 6TH DECEMBER 7PM
SCOTTISH URBAN MYTHS
‘~."/i> a” know a late or two oi st aiy ()l tiiiiuxiiiij t?‘.’t.‘lll‘. said to have happaiioti to a iiioiid at a lll(,‘tl(l, or a sisttri", hoyhitriid". IIlUIlI. those are uitxiii myths and as author Hiiaii Itaiiiiitjaii ()XI)|(IIIIT,, TM otlaiid has more
than its tail shalt}.
98 BUCHANAN STREET, GLASGOW GI 38A TEL: OM] 222 7700 '
www. bordei sstor C$.COltt/$l0l 05/283 OPENING HOURS:
80m to I lpm, Monday to SOIUidqy, Iqu to 9pm Sunday
15-29 NO\ 20;)1 THE LIST 101