by Joe Dunthorne
First published in 2008, this début novel has since been made into a film and was very well received by critics. I was attracted to it by a review and the sleeve notes promised me it was “laugh out loud enjoyable”.
Whilst I wouldn’t say I laughed out load whilst reading it, I certainly enjoyed the amusing way Joe Dunthorne presented the life and thoughts of a Swansea teenage boy.
Oliver Tate is a confused teenager, trying to come to terms with relationships, both with his parents and his girlfriend.
For any teenager, relationships are a minefield as hormones begin to take control. Add to the mix doubts about the stability of his parent’s relationship and his guilt regarding the bullying of a classmate, and you have a potent cocktail.
Whether the book is based on personal experience or not, Joe Dunthorne captures this turmoil and angst of the modern teenager very well. I for one would hate to be a teenager today.
A really good book with wonderful insight, told with sympathy and a great deal of humour.