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Everyday [Paperback]

Lee Rourke
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

14 Dec 2007
Everyday takes the reader for a dawdle into the moribund heart of London. This extraordinary collection of stories - featuring pigeons, putrefying exotic dancers, lost loves, boredom, cliché, lacklustre dérives, banality, sexual violence, the male gaze, a murderous acquisition of a tortuously blank book, and the sad demise of the number 38 bus - reinvents reality, that is at once sordid, hilarious and tender.

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Everyday + The Canal
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Product details

  • Paperback: 271 pages
  • Publisher: Social Disease; First edition (14 Dec 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0955282942
  • ISBN-13: 978-0955282942
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 1 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 911,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Lee Rourke is the author of the short-story collection 'Everyday', the novel 'The Canal' (winner of the Guardian's Not The Booker Prize 2010) and the poetry collection 'Varroa Destructor'. He is Writer-in-Residence at Kingston University, where he is an MFA lecturer in creative writing and critical theory. He lives by the sea. Follow him on Twitter: @leerourke

Product Description


A series of stories charting London's psychogeographical hinterlands, Everyday marks an exciting debut. Glibly humourous and with a big, blackened heart beating throughout, Rourke - a leading light of 'The Off-Beat Generation' writers currently making the leap from web to print - delivers a stunning collection charting the tormented lives of everyday misanthropes - and the grubby blank-eyed pigeons that dwell in the gutter alongside them. --Shortlist Magazine

Sick, depraved and utterly mad, with no redeeming features whatsoever. I loved it. Stewart Home --Stewart Home

Everyday is a guide book of sorts: a dark, twisted, hysterical and macabre map of the twilight city which lurks underneath our nation s capital. This magnificent collection is living proof that the short story is alive and well and living in London. Tony O Neill, author of Digging The Vein, Seizure Wet Dreams, and Songs From the Shooting Gallery --Tony O'Neill

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars cat-like grace 8 April 2008
By Johnson
Rourke manages to infuse Beckettian treadmill-like bleakness, repetition and humour into an anonymous London milieu of pigeons, photocopying machines, bus journeys and canals. A striking debut.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff 8 April 2008
An encouraging first collection of bleached and bleak urban tales. Looking forward to the next one.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fragments 11 May 2012
By PL - Published on
In the last chapter of Albert Camus's The Myth of Sisyphus, he outlines the legend of Sisyphus, the man who defied the gods and placed death in chains, so that no human need die. Finally after several false starts, the gods caught and punished him for all eternity to roll a rock up a mountain, only for it to fall down again, but you've done nothing that heroic. The nearest you got was not spilling that kebab, you took home the other night after consuming fifteen pints of the landlords finest, one heroic moment in a life of pointless drudgery.

Everyday is a collection of short stories by Lee Rourke, although as it says in the introduction some are so short that they hardly qualify, that the writer's preferred term is Fragments, fragments of a larger picture without end. There is no complete whole in Everyday, instead what we get are glimpses, framed through dirty cracked windows, of a London full of unfulfilled people, lives so beyond melancholic it hurts. These are individuals who's snapping point has long been reached and it wasn't a straw that broke the camel's back, more likely a rusty crowbar. The men and women float in and out of each others lives through one night stands, bar meetings or just through work, sometimes the situations turn violent, even deadly, but for the most part people reach their limit and just keep bumping, grinding and then carrying on. Occasionally though they commit small acts of rebellion, occasionally they walk out on their jobs, or take a different route, or just walk the streets without purpose for a moment forgetting their day to day existence.

Albert Camus, in his 1942 essay The Myth of Sisyphus, saw Sisyphus as personifying the absurdity of human life describing that "the Absurd arises out of the fundamental disharmony between the individual's search for meaning and the apparent meaninglessness of the universe.That as beings looking for meaning in a meaningless world, humans have three ways of resolving the dilemma" these being through Suicide, Faith, or acceptance of the Absurd: a solution in which one accepts the Absurd and continues to live in spite of it. Camus endorsed this solution, believing that by accepting the Absurd, one can achieve absolute freedom. Lee Rourke doesn't merely accept this, he celebrates it with his glass raised high.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding 25 May 2011
By Tom - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I read Rourke's 2nd book The Canal first. Everyday was an amazing book and while reading it I couldn't help but see where the author was incubating his ideas for the 2nd book. Rourke's writing style is unique and extra-ordinary to say the least. And please do yourself a favor and read The Canal. You get a better idea of the full breathe of this author's formation of a story in The Canal.

The Canal
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