Joshua Spassky – Gwendoline Riley

Ok, write what you know, yes, very good. But really? Written by a young female author about a young female author who is having some kind of dysfunctional affair with a young male playwright. Where do you get your ideas from, Gwendoline?

According to the back of the book, they eventually come to a surprising understanding. That they are in love. Wow.

How they decide this, I’m not sure, because they don’t really do much apart from drink, shag and talk elliptically. Anyway, I don’t think it’s really relevant to the story. Why? Because there is no story. This book is like finding a box full of polaroids in your flat that the previous tenant left behind. Some of them have the same people in, sometimes there are different people, but it doesn’t really matter who they are because they’re never in it again, and that’s it.

There’s a few scenes that could go straight into the Guardian Guide’s All Ears column. Not that they aren’t brilliantly observed or anything, just that they are utterly irrelevant to anything else between the covers of the book.

Not to say that the quality of the writing is bad – there are some lovely pieces, and if there was a plot, it would be a very good little book.

Fortunately, it’s not very long.

See also:

Mills and Boon – just cut out about 40% of the pages and you’ll be close.

Self-absorbed trendy people who you don’t know and probably wouldn’t like anyway


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