A review of the novel Barcelona Plates by Alexei Sayle
Book Reviews - September 2001
This is a very nice collection of short stories. You might recognize Alexei Sayle from the tv-series The Young Ones from the beginning of the 80s.
You will meet different interesting characters in these stories that are humorous, dramatic, sad or weird. The book's title comes from the first story, about a man named Barnaby going on holiday. Barnaby and his girlfriend has just broken up and he decides that a holiday in a "charming small village house" in Spain. Strangely enough, the house that sounded so nice when he booked his holiday on the Internet ("a charming small village house, in the hamlet of Chite, nestling in the valley of Lecrin. 25 minutes from the ancient city of Granada") turns out to be, not totally but close to, a dump.
Barnaby has got his Spanish rental car though.... and he sets out on a, quite not normal, little tour in his rental car.
The stories are really good, my personal favourite is the one-sided conversation taking place in the short story "Lose weight, ask me how", a nice twist to that one.
Now when the book is out in paperback, there is no excuse not to get this book, it is stories of both humourous and dramatic character that makes you think.
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