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The Beach Beneath the Pavement

by Roland Denning

Bernard Hawks is a former sixties idealist, worn down by the passing years, cynically reviewing our bread and circuses society (‘where no one believes in anything’). But when his satirical newspaper column appears to predict precisely where a bomb will go off, he becomes both a traitor and a hero.

So begins a journey through the looking glass, into a world more bizarre and corrupt than even Bernard’s cynical mind could have supposed. On the way, he encounters Animal, a crazily attractive female terrorist, Dillwyn, his conspiracy-obsessed neighbour, Professor Kepler, promulgator of the Theory of Post Credibility, and Danny, co-founder of the notorious 70s experimental theatre group, the Human Company. Worst of all, he faces life without his beloved Cydrax computer.

‘The Beach Beneath the Pavement’ should be read by cynics, conspiracy theorists and disillusioned ex-hippies everywhere. For others, be warned – this book may seriously damage your world view.

Suggested by Kat-WWJ, Buckinghamshire

Tagged with: clever, funny funny, intelligent quirky satire satire, satirical satirical, surprising surreal unexpected witty,

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This book made me laugh and frown almost without pauses between the two. I love authors who are able to bring out conflicting emotions within the space of a single page and Roland Denning is able to do exactly that. The book is both witty and satirical, but above all, it's very, very clever.
'Time Out' implodes. This is MY kind of book. Wry, sharp, observant, surprising, and made me laugh so much the cat left the room. What is he like? While trying to write this review, I scanned around for writing I could use as comparison. Hmm. Armistead Maupin meets Martin Amis, with a touch of Tom Robbins, all set in London's underbelly. Whoever he is, this writer has a voice of his own. I look forward to more. This is a book that I'll re-read. No doubt about it
I first read the opening to this book on the HC website, Authonomy what seems like many moons ago. It flew to the top five and I wanted to know why. Now, I do. It has the ability to pull you into the story, to journey along with its odd assortment of characters, and the writing and the plot are both top drawer. I'd imagine Mr Denning has a sharp wit and an even sharper mind, and I wonder how much of Bernard Hawks he draws from his own experiences. Either way, it's a superb read and a good edition to any bookshelf to read time and again.

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