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The Champion

by Tim Binding

The 1980s - a decade for the rich to thrive and prosper in Middle England. This satirical novel aptly captures this era. Investments gone bad, middle class snobbery and the greed of the self-made man are all depicted. Despite some well meaning intentions, I found it hard to like the characters of Large and Charles - the former a self obsessed but charismatic Hooray Henry and the latter a wine swilling bore.

Extract

And yes, it was bloody awful, your smelly old aunty with her thick stockings and false teeth warbling on about the war and how you should chew your food three hundred times, but you didn't pack her off somewhere. Your brought her in, made the best of it. There was a thread to it, who you were, where you came from, who mattered in the world. Not just our street, the armpit of London, or working-class Liverpool or backstreet Glasgow. Your middle-class suburbs, they looked after their their own once. But then they started to have aspirations. It was them what started all this, what with their drinks and dinner parties, afraid of what people would find once they came throught the front door, Dad honking in the fireplace, Mum putting her foot in it with the wrong accent, the wrong word.

Parallels

Money : A Suicide Note by Martin Amis
What a Carve Up by Jonathan Coe
No Such Thing as Society : A History of Britain in the 1980's by Andy McSmith
 

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