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The Last Weekend [Kindle Edition]

Blake Morrison
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £7.99
Kindle Price: £3.95 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

Set over a long weekend in East Anglia, this is the chilling story of a rivalrous friendship - as told with deceptive casualness by the narrator, Ian. It opens with a surprise phone call from an old university friend, inviting Ian and his wife, Em, for a few days by the sea. Their hosts, Ollie and Daisy, are a golden couple, and the scene is set for sunlit relaxation.

But dangerous tensions quickly emerge, and in the stifling atmosphere of a remote cottage in the hottest days of summer, Ollie and Ian resurrect a bet made twenty years before. Each day becomes a series of challenges for higher and higher stakes, setting in train actions that will have irreversible consequences.

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"The fascination is horrible, the prose addictive, the situation magnificently claustrophobic, the denouement shocking" (Alan Taylor Herald)

"Morrison has created far more than a sinister take on the country-house novel... This is a suspenseful thriller, but more importantly it succeeds as an exceedingly clever investigation into the strangeness of lies" (Christian House Independent on Sunday)

"A compelling psychological thriller that, in parts, will cause you to actually flinch" (Ben Felsenberg Metro)

"Delightfully twisted" (David Mills Esquire)

"This is one achievement among several for Blake Morrison, who has written a novel that is at once artful and naturalistic, restrained and yet suggestive, and faithful to a perspective from which the readers wants to recoil" (Stephen Abell Times Literary Supplement)

Book Description

Four friends, one weekend, and a bet that changes everyone's lives...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1491 KB
  • Print Length: 275 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0099581965
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital (27 April 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #48,746 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally compelling 22 Jun. 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
There is definately the touch of the Ian McEwan about this book. Like the other author, the prose is extremely well written and the narrative so exciting that it was really difficult to put this book down. Like McEwan, Morrison has the knack of unsettling you and I hurtled through the pages as I was anxious to discover what exactly happened to the characters in the end, even though none were particularly sympathetic - the narrator being particularly cringe-worthy.

The story concerns two couple who are reunited for a Bank Holiday weekend on the East coast with the two male characters being old friends from university. What I loved about the story was how the author managed to get right inside the head of his principle creation and conjure situations where we eventually start to realise that things aren't exactly what they seem. In the beginning we are offered glimpses of the main character's past and, one by one, these start to piece together into the jigsaw of the main thread of the novel, only that the picture we are trying to put together might not necessarily be the one that we had started off with. Consequently, the story becomes increasingly more exciting as the clues start to fit together and the last thirty or so pages had to be finished off late at night as I could not bare the suspense!! Not going to say any more as I don't want to spoil anyone's enjoyment but hope this is sufficient to prompt your curiousity.

Blake Morrison is not an author I had heard of before and I was prompted to buy this book after reading an excellent review in my Sunday newspaper. I am glad that I followed my interest up and, as the other reviwer stated, agree that this would make an excellent film or drama. Modern literature is a bit of a mixed bag for me.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping read but . . . 16 Aug. 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The book takes place over a bank holiday weekend where two couples share a weekend in a country house. Ollie & his wife Daisy - glamourous and wealthy, invite former university friend Ian and his wife Em(considerably poorer and "ugly toads" compared to the golden couple) for the weekend on the basis they have something important to tell them.

There is a sort of feel good feel to it to start with (think This Life, Peter's Friends, The Priory (Royal Court Play)) but as things unfold old rivalries and unfinished business becomes exposed.

It is a fairly short read and pretty page turning - I read it in a day which says alot for it's plot pace. The book is unusual because it doesn't patronise the reader - which is a real strength. So when a scene is described from one character's perspective that may not be all it seems to be, rather than having another character explain what actually happened (eg. Bret Easton Ellis Rules of Attraction), the reader is left to work it out and form his/her own conclusions.

The only real weakness in the book is the ending which was to me unsatisfying, very disappointing given the strength of the book and several of the ending strands were implausible. It's a shame and this is the only reason it gets 4 stars from me - otherwise would have been a clear 5.

It's kind of sad that authors can't include "alternative endings" in future editions of books a la DVD extras!! This book could be made perfect!

Good read though and would recommend nonetheless. Ideal reading for a weekend away.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping 29 Sept. 2012
I read this after watching the television series so I did already know what was going to happen, but this did not detract from the enjoyment and I still found myself hoping that something else would happen. The Last Weekend is set over a bank holiday weekend in August and as the time progresses you get the feeling that something terrible is going to happen. The characters that Blake Morrison has created are varied and interesting although the character of Ian is not likeable and it becomes clear throughout that he twists the truth. I did enjoy the book and the way it slowly unfolded until you know what happens but for me I felt that there was something missing from it to make it really really good, but it is a good psychological thriller all the same.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A compelling read 10 May 2011
I read Blake Morrison's previous novel, 'South Of The River' a few years ago. I enjoyed it, but am now struggling to recall much about it. This is a shorter and far more memorable read. Morrison's use of an unreliable narrator is the best I have ever come across in contemporary fiction. The reader realises only gradually that all is not as it seems. Vital snippets of information are dropped casually into the narrative. The author builds the tension superbly. To say much more would give away the plot, but I loved this book, and am still thinking about it several days after finishing it. Highly recommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent read 31 Aug. 2013
By Red
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the first time I have read a book by this author and it will not be the last.
A well written novel with believable characters. The scene setting, character construction and plot are well crafted. I particularly enjoyed the way the author made my emotions, in relation to the main character, swing from liking him, feeling sorry for him, thinking he is a loser, to thinking he is underhand. A true to life weekend experience which could have happened to any of us in these unfortunate circumstances. I am looking forward to reading more of Blake Morrison's work.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Quite liked this
Published 4 months ago by Joanna D
5.0 out of 5 stars If you loved the flim, the book is a "must" read
Bought the book because I loved the film. Found the book inconsistent in small ways. First, the main character is described as paunchy but then he's been working out all summer... Read more
Published 4 months ago by BCarpenter
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing
Intriguing story. suspense throughout.
watched the drama on tv and the book was equally as good.
only downside chapters too long
Published 11 months ago by katie owen
4.0 out of 5 stars Good holiday read
I read this after watching the television adaptation and as is usually the case, the book is more nuanced and convincing. That said, the casting is very apt. Read more
Published 15 months ago by A Ryder
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow burner
Took a while to get going and gathered momentum later on, in fact dangerously close to late on. They said, stick with it and final third is worth your patience.
Published 16 months ago by harold bishop
3.0 out of 5 stars Hmmm
Not my favourite book. Too many strands of the story just didn't hang with the tapestry of the main narrative. The television version was even weaker.
Published on 4 July 2013 by Salli
5.0 out of 5 stars A real page turner.
Blake Morrison is an excellent writer and does not disappoint with this book which unpeels like an onion with every layer more surprsing than the one before. Read more
Published on 29 Mar. 2013 by Joey Dean
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read
This book is well written and an enjoyable read. The story is well told, and becomes spookier as the book progresses. I thoroughly recommend.
Published on 10 Oct. 2012 by Louis the cat
1.0 out of 5 stars Long boring uninteresting; why so many words to say so little!
The problem with kindles are that you buy books for the sake of it and then try and make yourself read them. Read more
Published on 17 Sept. 2012 by Anna Hamblett
5.0 out of 5 stars The Last Weekend DVD
I received The Last Weekend DVD from in the mail today and watched it immeditely. I am a huge fan of Rupert Penry-jones. This is by far one of his best works. Read more
Published on 16 Sept. 2012 by RPJ USA Fan
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