One for the Trouble: Book Slam, Volume One is the first release from the UK’s premier literary event. Eighteen Book Slam alumni, from household names like Irvine Welsh and William Boyd to newcomers like Kate Tempest and Sophie Woolley, were approached to take a song title for inspiration for a new short story or poem. Some took this literally (Jon McGregor’s moving reimagining of A House’s 'Endless Art', for example); others suggestively (who’d have thought Grandmaster Flash's 'The Message' would have lead Paul Murray to a heartbreaking tale of schoolboy rugby?). The resulting collection is unique, diverse, and thoroughly entertaining. With most contributions read by the authors’ themselves, others by some of our best-loved actors, One for the Trouble provides a perfect snapshot of the very best contemporary British writing, including:
1. 'Grave Architecture' (Pavement, 1995) by Richard Milward (read by author)
2. 'New Gold Dream' (Simple Minds, 1982 )by Hari Kunzru (read by author)
3. 'New Dawn Fades' (Joy Division, 1979) by Simon Armitage (read by author)
4. 'Comeback Girl' (Republic of Loose, 2005) by Irvine Welsh (read by Andrew Scott)
5. 'I'm Going Slightly Mad' (Queen, 1991) by Bernardine Evaristo (read by author)
6. 'The Bed's Too Big Without You' (Sheila Hylton, 1981) by Kate Tempest (read by author)
7. 'When I'm Sixty-Four' (The Beatles, 1967) by Joe Dunthorne (read by author)
8. 'Tears of a Clown' (Smokey Robinson and The Miracles, 1967) by William Boyd (read by Olivia Colman)
9. 'The Message' (Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, 1982) by Paul Murray (read by Chris O’Dowd)
10. 'Ascension' (John Coltrane, 1966) by Roger Robinson (read by author)
11. 'Violet Stars Happy Hunting!' (Janelle Monáe, 2007) by Helen Oyeyemi (read by author)
12. 'I Read My Sentence…' (Radka Toneff, 1986) by Don Paterson (read by author)
13. 'Let Me Entertain You' (Robbie Williams, 1998) by Patrick Ness (read by Mark Strong)
14. 'Bank Holiday' (Blur, 1994) by Luke Wright (read by author)
15. 'I Am the Walrus' (The Beatles, 1967) by Sophie Woolley (read by author)
16. 'That Summer Feeling' (Jonathan Richman, 1984) by Jon Ronson (read by author)
17. 'Underground' (Ben Folds Five, 1995)by Tim Key (read by author)
18. 'Endless Art' (A House, 1992) by Jon McGregor (read by author)
©2011 Patrick Neate (P)2011 Patrick Neate
"Book Slam has single-handedly dragged the London literary scene into the 21st century." (Hari Kunzru)
A series of strange and uncanny short stories, by some of the best UK writers. It was peppered with a few poems and at least one monologue style ' rap'. I liked the different narrators and array of street savvy characters. Sometimes sad, often poignant.
"How could someone rate this as one star?"
I don't normally bother contributing to the mass of public opinion but some illiterate rated this compilation with one star! One star! I can only imagine they are also computer illiterate and clicked the wrong button or are more used to the output of Andy McNabb (actually I do quite enjoy Andy's work).
It's a great collection of really good writing narrated mostly by the authors. What more do you want?
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