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Eleven Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 165 customer reviews

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Length: 308 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Review

Jot Davies is a superb reader of the tale, switching seamlessly and apparently effortlessly from Aussie to Geordie to Cockney to posh to agonising stammer. His performance is sensitive and subtle, and the most accomplished I've heard for a long time. It is a tour de force. --The Independent (audiobook review)

Funny but also sharply observed and unexpectedly moving. --The Times

'Eleven' is an intelligent, witty and heart-warming tale with a significant... message - and his most accomplished book to date. --Time Out

About the Author

Mark Watson is an acclaimed novelist and comedian, best-known for his appearances on Mock the Week, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Have I Got News for You and Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow as well as the Edinburgh Fringe. In 2010 his 50-date solo stand-up tour will play to over 60,000 people.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 606 KB
  • Print Length: 308 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (30 July 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003M69XMK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 165 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #41,268 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Somewhat out of character for a bloke who can have a novel on the go for well in excess of a month, I lay in the garden and devoured Eleven in a weekend. I attribute this partly to the weather, partly to the fact that my girlfriend was otherwise detained but mostly to the quality of Watson's writing.

Anyone familiar with Watson as a comedian will be aware that his appeal is down to more than just him 'being funny'; he's humble enough to endear himself without being too self-deprecating and his insight can challenge your thoughts without seeming preachy. These aspects of his personality are naturally evident in his writing.

Eleven is the story of eleven people with little in common other than their geographic location and a single string of related events, invisible to everyone but the omniscient reader. It's also the story of one of those eleven having his arm twisted into being a better person, having a tangible positive effect on his world while around him the aftershocks of a previous bad decision rumble on, more disastrously than he would have ever imagined.

It's a romanticised view, to some extent, and Watson applies a degree of artistic licence but it remains honest because it undoubtedly reflects exactly the sort of chain reaction of actions and consequences that is going on around us all the time, undetectable from the viewpoint of someone on the inside looking out.

Ultimately, Eleven serves as a touching illustration of how decisions we make or fail to make can affect ourselves and others in ways we couldn't dream possible, causing you to ask yourself the simultaneous questions 'Could I be better?', 'Should I be better?' and 'Why do I bother?
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Format: Paperback
It was a nice book and an interesting read, did make me think about my actions and how they impact on others. I don't think it will win any awards but I would recommend it if you want a nice, simple read that will make you smile in parts and gasp in shock in others. Pippa is such a fantastic character and is really easy to connect to. Passed the book on to a friend who loved it !
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By Ax on 19 April 2012
Format: Paperback
I have really been bowled over by the style in which 'Eleven' has been written. It seems a very different and unorthodox way to structure a story but it seems to work (and I'll be honest, the style was a little off-putting after a few chapters).

The main character Xavier is very hard to connect with at the start but as the story progresses into the chain of events, it becomes a book that you just simply cannot put down! I very much started to enthuse with Xavier's character and the more that started to unravel about his past the more I decided to enjoy the story and Xavier's "ways".

I first started reading this book last year and because I thought the story line was going nowhere in particular I became largely dissapointed and stopped reading it a quarter of the way through. But having had a day off from work today, I decided to give it another go and my opinion has completely changed having finished it over the past few hours!

Overall it's got quite a dark theme and punchy storyline and with the witty humour incorporated within the book in small doses, it becomes a real treat and find for any reader.

4 stars, well deserved!
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Format: Paperback
This reminded me a little of Hunters and Gatherers (Geoff Nicholson), which also plays on the theme of disparate people bumping into each other, though in a slightly more surreal way.
In Eleven, the whole narrative stems from a single action not performed - or rather partially performed. Xavier Ireland, a promising London-based Australian DJ on the graveyard midnight-4am shift destined for greater things - intervenes when a boy is being bullied, but backs out when the odds seem stacked against him.
The boy's mother feels she has been too distracted by her job as a journalist to carry out her role as a mother, and her frustration causes her to write a vitriolic review of a restaurant. This is in turn means the drunken restaurant owner lashes out and sacks a kitchen worker, a fat boy who then has to find another, disastrously misjudged, way to get the money for his gym membership...and so on and so on.
Eventually, via a suicidal maths teacher, a formerly promising discus thrower forced by arthritis to give up and support herself and her sister by taking cleaning jobs, a frustrated estate agent and a psychotherapist, everything comes full circle and rebounds back on Xavier.
None of the characters is simple; all have features that evoke some sympathy, and each has a back story - the homeless mother downstairs from Xavier, the office worker upstairs who isn't quite the battered woman Xavier imagines.
Even people who appear briefly, like the fellow expat Gemma with whom Xavier shares a one night stand, are not just dismissed, but given an after-story which in her case takes her in a few sentences back to Australia, marriage, retirement and eventual death. Almost an obsessive tying up of loose ends.
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