Marine Boy — Howard Cunnell

A bit different this one. It’s one of them literary books for interleckshals what don’t have no plot or nothing, so don’t go expecting skinheads beating Asians up and raping hippies at the seaside. It’s more about family relationships and living up to other people’s expectations. It is a good book, but the way the skinheads lie around on the beach smoking dope all day they’re more like bald hippies than anything else.

It’s set in the 80s or maybe late 70s (it doesn’t say which, but it’s definitely not late 60s/early 70s like the book blurb makes out).  The main character comes home from boarding school for the summer to find everyone he knows has gone from punk to skinhead. His older brother is the skinhead leader, and deals drugs at the seaside town where they all live. There’s a rival gang of rich Persians who also deal drugs in the town, and this results in the brief fight scenes. There’s also an old Hells Angel who both the skinheads and Persians buy their drugs from.

It’s let down by a lack of proofreading, like most books these days, and the prose is a bit too flowery and rambling at times for my liking, but overall I liked it. I doubt I’ll read it again, and I’m unlikely to look at any of his other books, but I’m glad I noticed this one.

Amazon UK

 

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About Marcus Blakeston

Ex-shouting poet, ex-fanzine writer, ex-angry young man (now growing old disgracefully). Living in sunny Yorkshire with his wife, children and motorcycle, Marcus still has a healthy distrust of all forms of authority.
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