The narrator wakes up on a mortuary slab and, in panic, flees in a stolen labcoat and old trainers. Calling himself Freddie Figg he sets about constructing a life faced with a blank canvas, a task made problematic by a memory that erases every couple of weeks.
Copyright © 2011 Trevor Coote
It is 1971. Glenn Turley is a 19 year old self-styled suedehead with a cherry-picked code of conduct that emphasises hard, productive work and eschews all aspects of criminality except for football hooliganism in which he is an enthusiastic participant. However, he is in a race against time to reach the top rung before he becomes a dinosaur as suedehead fashion disappears before his eyes, along with his youth. Falling in love with a prostitute helps divert his mind and manages to dislocate his actions from their dreadful consequences.
Lemon Socks (2010-11)
Welcome Back, Freddie Figg (2009-10)
All of my novels are located in London. In some location is incidental but in others the capital forms the vital backdrop to the story.
The 1970’s is both the hero and the villain in this episodic voyage through the decade that linked the optimistic swinging London of the 1960s to the explosive and despairing inner city riots of the 1980s. What was it like to have lived through those tumultuous years when events and changes occurred that would rock the capital and transform the country’s social and political landscape forever? This is one version seen through the eyes of civil servant Raymond Quest and his circle of friends, colleagues and family in London.
Frank Ford emerges from prison for the second time with the memoirs of his childhood and early adulthood under his arm ready for publication, but finds himself constantly undermined by changes and disappointments in life that he cannot understand. With his present life a huge social and economic void, the past is all that he has. Encouraged by a middle-class girlfriend he tries to update his memoirs but he becomes trapped in 1981 and his love for a girl from that time.
*This novel was originally conceived as a sequel to The Playthorpe Boys and issued as one volume, North by North Seven. However, it has stood the test of time better than the original and I have reissued it as a stand alone work.
I'm not afraid to die, I just don't want to be there when it happens - Woody Allen
In an attempt to erase a dreadful incident from his distant past, Hal, now inhis sixties, is content to pass his days in obscurity, living a life of clockwork routine even though he suffers an intense loneliness. Then Phil reappears, a gangster who shared that same past, and the terrible memories come flooding back. As matters drift out of control the only hope for his sanity is Ingrid, an equally damaged, lonely young woman.
In 1960’s London, members of the Baxter family are trying to make sense of each other. Principal breadwinner and head of the family is introspective and outwardly serene Tom. Tom is a collector of hire purchase payments, a tallyman. His frustrated wife Girlie seeks flashes of joy in nights out with her friends and a chancy fling with her wastrel brother-in-law, Johnny. Teenage Theo, studious and quiet, longs to be a street ruffian, his younger brother Dick, a surgeon. However, the odd relationship between Tom and his vivacious adolescent daughter Bonnie disturbs the fragile equilibrium, sparks rumours and ultimately leads to tragedy.
Jason Quinn has sold his late father’s drainage company and house and decamped with his unhappy young girlfriend Lenora and his venomous pets to a huge house in suburban Essex, overstretching his resources. Then, on a trip to the zoo, he fails to respond to a tragic incident which shatters his life and sends him yearning for his carefree youth in North London’s backstreets.
England a little in the future: King Harry, despite marrying a Muslim, is Head of State. The prisons are full of climate change deniers and suspected terrorists from Bazurkistan whose President Zardok threatens world security. The charismatic and egotistical Barclay McDonald is Prime Minister and runs the country like a school classroom with help from his ambitious Japanese wife Tamiko and Jamie McNair, his press and publicity consultant. But nothing is certain in this fragile world as hapless individuals try to make sense of their daily existence. Has the whole world gone mad? Are we about to record our own extinction?