The Rotters' ClubBy Jonathan Coe
At 8.20 precisely, the timing device set off the trigger, the battery pack sent power running through the cables, and thirty pounds of gelignite exploded on the far side of the pub. And that was how it all ended, for the chick and the hairy guy. The tale of Benjamin Trotter and his friends' coming of age during the 1970s is a heartfelt celebration of the joys and agonies of growing up. Featuring, among other things, IRA bombs, prog rock, punk rock, bad poetry, first love, love on the side, prefects, detention, a few bottles of Blue Nun, plenty of brown wallpaper, industrial strife, and divine intervention in the form of a pair of swimming trunks, it is firmly and mischievously located in the midst of the decade's many struggles and upheavals. Tragic and riotous by turns, packed with thwarted romance and furtive sex, "The Rotters' Club" is for anyone who ever experienced adolescence the hard way.