Customer Reviews


5 Reviews
5 star:
 (1)
4 star:
 (3)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Highland Hi-Jinks
Warner's fourth book bears many marks of similarity to his first three, both in subject matter, imagination, setting, and unevenness. Set in the same part of Scotland's Western Highlands, the story revolves around the port town of Oban. As in Morvern Callar and to a lesser extent These Demented Lands, there's a central figure wandering the landscape in semi-picaresque...
Published on 26 Jan 2003 by A. Ross

versus
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Walking Into Insanity.
Well. This truly is a very, very strange book altogether. Fans of Warner's other works will not find this surprising. However, this is a more freeform Warner, and veers between erudition, sickness, sex, surrealism and outright hilarity. I lost count of the number of times I laughed during reading this, principally due to the sheer strangeness of Warner's imagination. You...
Published on 2 Jun 2002


Most Helpful First | Newest First

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More Highland Hi-Jinks, 26 Jan 2003
By 
A. Ross (Washington, DC) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Man Who Walks (Paperback)
Warner's fourth book bears many marks of similarity to his first three, both in subject matter, imagination, setting, and unevenness. Set in the same part of Scotland's Western Highlands, the story revolves around the port town of Oban. As in Morvern Callar and to a lesser extent These Demented Lands, there's a central figure wandering the landscape in semi-picaresque fashion in pursuit of a large sum of cash. The protagonist is "The Nephew" a semi-homeless tinker whose legendary wild uncle (the title character) has stolen a pub's World Cup pool money. As he wanders the highlands a step behind his uncle, the Nephew (who is a bit of an oddball himself) manages to get in situations where he has weird sex, takes odd drugs, pukes, drinks, urinates in a doll's head, feasts with nobility, and gets mixed up with an inordinate number of total weirdoes. Warner's fictional Highlands are a sort of rural New York where every time you turn around there's some madman who's all to happy to include you in his world.
Warner's first two books, especially These Demented Lands, exhibited a kind of wild borderline surrealism that sometimes worked and sometimes didn't. These Demented Lands didn't really have enough of a narrative line and ultimately fell apart, however here he's got just enough of a plot to keep everything together. The Nephew's quest is often hilarious, often horrifying, and wholly imaginative, while at times veering off course and just barely holding together. Warner's clearly a talented writer and this is one of his better efforts, but I'd still suggest trying his much more accessible The Sopranos before you delve into this.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars compact madness, violent and visceral, 12 Mar 2011
By 
Lucinda Stern (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Man Who Walks (Paperback)
I've read all of Warner's other work so knew what to expect. I think had I not I would have felt very lost indeed, and may not have continued to read. Like Morven and These Demented Land the prose takes place in Scotland and is a mixture of gritty council estates, and rugged scenery.

The Man Who Walks - sometimes known as the Uncle is a disturbing portrait of madness, with his home full of hoarded tins of pilchards, and accessed by papier mache tunnels, and his habit of placing coloured glass in his empty eye socket. He is a mixture of terrifying, fantastic and pitiable. The Nephew meanwhile works his way through a parade of eccentric characters, as he hitch-hikes across the lands in search of his uncle, and the £27,000 he is rumoured to carry.

Perhaps one of Warner's skills is that it all seems believable in an odd sort of way. Its like if someone took the odd experiences and encounters of a lifetime and compacted them over three days. This gives the work an intensity which makes it highly readable. Some sentences such as 'they passed a man with no arms jumping up and down on the side of the road' are dropped in so casually that you only realise as you pass them quite how odd they are.

I like the references to characters in Morven and These Demented Lands, the Mantrap Nighclub which is a constant feature in Warner's books, the canoe painted with Bible quotations, the reference to the train-driver's niece who wrote a book etc. These are a bonus for the Warner reader.

My main critisism of this book would be the violence. Eyes being pulled out, and knee-caps shattered is rather too graphic for my liking. I had to skip a few paragraphs. I also simply got bored towards the end. Only the very last few pages, but I felt worn out (or Warn out in the case).
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Walking Into Insanity., 2 Jun 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: The Man Who Walks (Paperback)
Well. This truly is a very, very strange book altogether. Fans of Warner's other works will not find this surprising. However, this is a more freeform Warner, and veers between erudition, sickness, sex, surrealism and outright hilarity. I lost count of the number of times I laughed during reading this, principally due to the sheer strangeness of Warner's imagination. You get the feeling the more outrageous something was, the more likely he was to commit it to paper during writing.
The plot? Well. The Man Who Walks - a bizarre character I couldn't begin to explain - steals £27,000 and goes to spend it on drink and debauchery in the Scottish Highlands. His nephew, cunningly called The Nephew, sets out after him, and encounters all manner of weird and wonderful goings-on. Any more wouldn't do justice to the text.
However. This really isn't among Warner's best work. His usual gorgeous lyrical prose poetry passages are here, many of the subject of nature. But. There is not enough distance between the author and his creations, and the narrative voice all just comes off as one person, ie the writer, instead of the several disparate voices it is meant to be, which is pretty disappointing.
But hey. The whole thing is amusing enough, if confusing in places. It's like reading a David Lynch film, if that helps you out any.
And it probably doesn't.
Warner fans will eat it up. Everybody else will just be confused. Actually, so will Warner fans be, so strike that. If nonsense and sensibility is what you're looking for, look no further.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Godlike weirdness, 2 Jun 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: The Man Who Walks (Paperback)
Packed from beginning to end with laugh-aloud humour, startling images, shocking twists and turns, and incisive visions of modern Scotland. This is like nothing else you've ever read - except, perhaps, Warner's earlier novels. But this one is even better, even bolder, even further out.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars scotland never looked more attractive, 4 July 2002
By 
Black Dog (Lochgilphead) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Man Who Walks (Paperback)
Yet another drug fuelled, debauched journey around the West coast of Scotland from Warner. More Demented Lands than any of his other books Man Who Walks is an Odyssean journey by The Nephew from Oban to the killing fields of Culloden - with many a weird and wonderful stop along the way. As usual, Warner's observation of character, language and landscape is a joy to read. Lyrical and magical.
WARNING: Warner manages to wipe out any living creature that comes along - from budgies to deer to wasps to sheep - in the most grpahic and sickening manner. Not a book for animal-lovers.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Man Who Walks
The Man Who Walks by Alan Warner
£3.95
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews