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Shuggie Bain

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Dod101
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Shuggie Bain

#415027

Postby Dod101 » May 25th, 2021, 3:11 pm

This is of course the new Booker Prize winner and probably quite a few will have read it. I have just finished it in about three days. In its way it is almost unputdownable, inspiring, depressing and fascinating all at the same time. I just wish that my late wife, who was born in Paisley had been able to read it as I would have loved to have had her opinion of it.

Very probably only too true to life in the underworld of parts of the west of Scotland. I heartily recommend it but be prepared for an emotional roller coaster. Will say no more. Just buy it now. Available in paperback.

Dood

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Re: Shuggie Bain

#415191

Postby servodude » May 26th, 2021, 2:51 am

Dod101 wrote:This is of course the new Booker Prize winner and probably quite a few will have read it. I have just finished it in about three days. In its way it is almost unputdownable, inspiring, depressing and fascinating all at the same time. I just wish that my late wife, who was born in Paisley had been able to read it as I would have loved to have had her opinion of it.

Very probably only too true to life in the underworld of parts of the west of Scotland. I heartily recommend it but be prepared for an emotional roller coaster. Will say no more. Just buy it now. Available in paperback.

Dood


Thanks for the reminder. It's already on my Kindle to be read when I'm in the mood for "that kind of thing"
On which note... I really enjoyed "Swing Hammer Swing" by Jeff Torrington when that came out but found Kelman's "How Late it Was" a bit of a slog a couple of years later - for the lack of punctuation more than anything else though (I enjoyed his "Busconductor Hines")

- sd

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Re: Shuggie Bain

#415364

Postby Charlottesquare » May 26th, 2021, 5:39 pm

Dod101 wrote:This is of course the new Booker Prize winner and probably quite a few will have read it. I have just finished it in about three days. In its way it is almost unputdownable, inspiring, depressing and fascinating all at the same time. I just wish that my late wife, who was born in Paisley had been able to read it as I would have loved to have had her opinion of it.

Very probably only too true to life in the underworld of parts of the west of Scotland. I heartily recommend it but be prepared for an emotional roller coaster. Will say no more. Just buy it now. Available in paperback.

Dood


Paisley, such a wonderful place that my niece, after a reasonably recent stint as an A & E doctor there, went over to Australia where she remains.

At one time I am sure I read it had one of the highest rates of gunshot wounds per area/population in Scotland, but that was a fair few years back.

I spent parts of the 1980s, during my apprenticeship, boldly wearing a pinstripe suite, carrying a briefcase and rapidly transiting the railway station, hoping I did not catch the eye of some of the locals as I visited clients in the area for their audits.

Dod101
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Re: Shuggie Bain

#415366

Postby Dod101 » May 26th, 2021, 5:47 pm

Charlottesquare wrote:
Dod101 wrote:This is of course the new Booker Prize winner and probably quite a few will have read it. I have just finished it in about three days. In its way it is almost unputdownable, inspiring, depressing and fascinating all at the same time. I just wish that my late wife, who was born in Paisley had been able to read it as I would have loved to have had her opinion of it.

Very probably only too true to life in the underworld of parts of the west of Scotland. I heartily recommend it but be prepared for an emotional roller coaster. Will say no more. Just buy it now. Available in paperback.

Dood


Paisley, such a wonderful place that my niece, after a reasonably recent stint as an A & E doctor there, went over to Australia where she remains.

At one time I am sure I read it had one of the highest rates of gunshot wounds per area/population in Scotland, but that was a fair few years back.

I spent parts of the 1980s, during my apprenticeship, boldly wearing a pinstripe suite, carrying a briefcase and rapidly transiting the railway station, hoping I did not catch the eye of some of the locals as I visited clients in the area for their audits.


Indeed, spoken as a true Edinburgher, although I absolutely agree with you. My wife left at the age of 19 I think it was, to go to Aberdeen and never returned. Strange though because it has some attractive public buildings mostly as a result of its industrial heritage.

Dod

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Re: Shuggie Bain

#415437

Postby servodude » May 27th, 2021, 5:54 am

Dod101 wrote:
Charlottesquare wrote:
Dod101 wrote:This is of course the new Booker Prize winner and probably quite a few will have read it. I have just finished it in about three days. In its way it is almost unputdownable, inspiring, depressing and fascinating all at the same time. I just wish that my late wife, who was born in Paisley had been able to read it as I would have loved to have had her opinion of it.

Very probably only too true to life in the underworld of parts of the west of Scotland. I heartily recommend it but be prepared for an emotional roller coaster. Will say no more. Just buy it now. Available in paperback.

Dood


Paisley, such a wonderful place that my niece, after a reasonably recent stint as an A & E doctor there, went over to Australia where she remains.

At one time I am sure I read it had one of the highest rates of gunshot wounds per area/population in Scotland, but that was a fair few years back.

I spent parts of the 1980s, during my apprenticeship, boldly wearing a pinstripe suite, carrying a briefcase and rapidly transiting the railway station, hoping I did not catch the eye of some of the locals as I visited clients in the area for their audits.


Indeed, spoken as a true Edinburgher, although I absolutely agree with you. My wife left at the age of 19 I think it was, to go to Aberdeen and never returned. Strange though because it has some attractive public buildings mostly as a result of its industrial heritage.

Dod


Paisley would be much better off if it were just a bit further away from Glasgow
- why bother getting off the train when you can be in the "Second City of the Empire" in less than 15 minutes
- so over the years it has been reduced to council offices, sunbed shops, discount stores and probably the worst traffic system I've ever encountered....and then there was getting rid of Love St!

There was a time in the 90s when it was looking up, you could even convince folk from Glasgow that Fury's in Shuttle Street was worth a punt - and it was! But it didn't really last.

Shame really as it has potential
- and the Coats Observatory (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coats_Observatory)
- and a supermarket where the football ground should be :(

still better than staying in Barrhead though
- sd

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Re: Shuggie Bain

#415451

Postby Dod101 » May 27th, 2021, 7:27 am

You know Paisley much better than I do. I was there with my late wife a few times but I now have no reason to go there and I cannot imagine why I would again. I doubt that it was the setting for Shuggie Bain but anyone who knows the general area would I expect recognise the scenes in it.

Dod

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Re: Shuggie Bain

#415470

Postby servodude » May 27th, 2021, 8:52 am

Dod101 wrote:You know Paisley much better than I do. I was there with my late wife a few times but I now have no reason to go there and I cannot imagine why I would again. I doubt that it was the setting for Shuggie Bain but anyone who knows the general area would I expect recognise the scenes in it.

Dod


I spent a lot of time there as kid. All my grandparents met there after moving from Ireland.
We moved away (or "escaped") when I was just old enough to remember having lived there, but it's where all my family were, where the parish was.
Over the next couple of decades those that could left, to anywhere they could: Millport, over to Fife, "back" to Ireland, England, even Edinburgh!!
- i think I've probably still got cousins working in the council offices (living in Erskine though)

Paisley itself (and to be fair I've not been back to the UK for 4+ years now) just seems like an anachronism of a picturesque Victorian centre overrun by neds
- neglected to a degree that's really strange given what they could do given what there is to work with
- especially since there's been huge gentrification in places like Darnley, Nitshill etc (they've got a Sainsburys!)

which having remembered it's the book forum makes me think I'll recommend Christopher Brookmyre for a more modern and irreverent take on the west of Scotland experience (a lot of his stuff is set in Edinburgh but when he does bring someone to Paisley it's very believably evocative)
Like myself he's a Barrhead lad (my pal's mum tutored him for chemistry) and somehow manages to embrace that in a way that makes me think there might have been more options than deciding to bugger off to Australia. Anyway one of his books featured the (approximate) quote "his face lit up like a Nitshill window in early November" - and while that might be quite parochial (it's to do with the Xmas trees ;) ), it stuck so he must have been doing something right.

- sd


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