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Half a World Away Paperback – 5 Sep 2003

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan (5 Sept. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1405032839
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405032834
  • Product Dimensions: 14.5 x 1.9 x 20.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,491,899 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Tom Bromley was born in Salisbury in 1972 and grew up in York. A writer and editor, he is the author and co-author of eight books under his own name, and the ghostwriter of many more. His books include the novels 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love' and 'Half A World Away', and the non-fiction works 'We Could Have Been The Wombles', 'All in the Best Possible Taste', 'Rock and Pop Elevens', 'The Encyclopedia of Guilty Pleasures' and 'Shopping While Drunk'. Tom's latest book, 'Wired For Sound' is published by Simon and Schuster in June 2012. He lives in Salisbury with his wife, two daughters and his record collection.

Product Description


It has bags of charm, some neat ideas and a refreshing emotional candour. -- John O'Connell in Time Out, October 2003

Book Description

Knebworth 1996, and as the crowds wait for Oasis to appear Ben is thinking about his girlfriend, Sarah, who has embarked on a year's teaching English in Japan. While she is away, exploring a new country, savouring new friendships, Ben is left behind in England, whiling away the hours working for New Labour at Millbank. Ben isn't entirely alone, for there's Bex, his flatmate, voluntarily parted from her boyfriend, Si. Bex is a folk guitarist, and at one of her gigs, Ben meets Mika, a Japanese folkie and a big Nick Drake fan. And though it is Sarah who is doing all the travelling, it's Ben who's experiencing some wanderlust of his own . . . 'A shrewd and ingenious riff on modern relationships, but finally more than that: it's about politics and music as well as feelings, and how you have to insist on the highest standards in all three. A comic gem with a serious undertow' Jonathan Coe --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Steve Tomlinson on 19 Aug. 2005
Format: Paperback
Make a list of all the things you can think of from the New Labour / Britpop era and shoe-horn them, any which way you can, in to an uninvolving tale of young love between two people who write utterly tedious letters to each other.
Surely, story aside, one of the great joys of reading is when you rewind and re-read through sheer admiration for the way in which something's been phrased. A kind of positive envy. None of that in this trite and tired novel I'm afraid.
Any positives? Well it confirms just how great a "BritLit" writer Tim Lott is when compared to this sixth-form effort.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful By NB on 6 Jun. 2007
Format: Paperback
You'd think a book that included politics, music and love would be an exciting combination. Not in this case.

I should have known from the cover, which is possibly the worst one I've ever seen, but the blurb on the back about records and love drew me in, but, High Fidelity this ain't.

Using clumsy dialogue and characters you couldn't care less about, Bromley attempts to shoehorn a variety of subjects (long-distance love, politics, fidelity, Hiroshima, falling in love with a Japanese nick drake fan whilst our girlfriend is IN Japan - clever see?!) into one, thankfully small, book.

His affection for the work of Jonathan Coe is obvious (he even gets a cover quote from him) but unlike Coe, who manages to address 1970's politics along with a myriad of twisty/turny stories in `The Rotter's Club', this is clumsy and overly complicated.

Whether describing the death of Britpop, lad mags, and new Labour, or what he thinks love is, his attempt is OTT, overdone and is written in a way that suggests his readers will fail to understand any subtly by mentioning (for example) the title, which is mentioned about 5 times during the book, as if to say, "look, see, me and my girlfriend met over Oasis . Then we went to Knebworth, then she went to Japan, and it's called half a world away. She's HALF A WORLD AWAY....See! SEE! Do you geddit?
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