An epic novel about the bonds of friendship from the author of Trainspotting.The story of four boys growing up in the Edinburgh projects, Glue is about the loyalties, the experiences, and the secrets that hold friends together through three decades. The boys become men: Juice Terry, the work-shy fanny-merchant, with corkscrew curls and sticky fingers; Billy the boxer, driven, controlled, playing to his strengths; Carl, the Milky Bar Kid, drifting along to his own soundtrack; and the doomed Gally, exceedingly thin-skinned and vulnerable to catastrophe at every turn. We follow their lives from the seventies into the new century―from punk to techno, from speed to E. Their mutual loyalty is fused in street morality: Back up your mates, don't hit women, and, most important, never snitch―on anyone. Glue has the Irvine Welsh trademarks―crackling dialogue, scabrous set pieces, and black, black humor―but it is also a grown-up book about growing up―about the way we live our lives, and what happens to us when things become unstuck. "Stocked with his usual quirky, sympathetic characters, this rollicking new tale sparkles with the writer's trademark satiric wit. Its heft and narrative breadth should convince any remaining skeptics that Welsh―now effectively the grand old man of in-your-face Scottish fiction―is a writer to be taken seriously."―Publishers Weekly starred review
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With a title like Glue, it would seem reasonable to assume that Irvine Welsh's fifth book is a meditation on the pitfalls of solvent abuse. In fact the word refers to the bonds that unite four boys, all of whom have grown up in "the scheme"--i.e., Edinburgh's slum-clearance flats, whose optimistic construction in the 1970s give way to the poverty, unemployment, and crime of the succeeding decades. It is the pervasive despair of these crumbling projects that defines the lives of the protagonists: budding DJ Carl Ewart, boxer Billy Birrell, work-shy, sex-mad Terry Lawson, and Andrew Galloway, a drug addict who has tested HIV-positive.
Recounted in the author's inimitable style, Glue is a grungy, Scots-accented bildungsroman. The novel follows the boys through their early forays into sex, drink, drugs, and football violence. Contemplating his erotic initiation, Carl Ewart poses such crucial questions as "How dae ah chat up a bird?" and "Do I wear a rubber johnny?" Here and there Welsh injects political commentary into the mix: Billy Birrell, for example, reflects that "having money is the only way to get respect. Desperate, but that's the world we live in now." For the most part, though, the author sticks to sex and violence and his famously offhand one-liners: "Guilt and shaggin, they go the gither like fish n chips." Fans of Trainspotting will love the book, even down to the brief appearance of Begbie and Renton. Others may feel that Glue is more of the same, and that, despite its graphic charms, the book finds Welsh stuck in a rut. --Jerry BrottonAbout the Author:
Irvine Welsh is the best-selling author of Trainspotting, Ecstasy, Glue, Porno, Filth, Marabou Stork Nightmares, The Acid House, Skagboys, and, most recently, A Decent Ride. He currently lives in Chicago. T2 Trainspotting was first published as Porno.
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Book Description JONATHAN CAPE, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0224061267