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Pelican Blood Paperback – 6 Jun 2005
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'Featuring a neat twist at the end, this is a fantastically original study of obsession, life, love and birds. -- FHM
'This is an original, deeply felt novel whose raw lyricism feels powered by the forces of nature itself. -- Metro
Compulsively readable...a moving meditation on the nature...of love and friendship...in a world blighted by human greed. -- Jem Poster, Guardian
[Freddis] sensitive treatment of the rekindled romance between artist Stevie and the trigger-happy narrator reveals subtle emotional shadings. -- Sunday Times
From the Publisher
One of the most exciting debut novels for years...Cris Freddi has created three memorably vivid characters...a debut author with a wealth of talent. His will be a name to watch in the future. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
The three young leading characters all have varying degrees of talent. Stevie has a talent for art, but is tortured by not been quite good enough; Bish has a musical gift which he is careless of and our un-named narrator has no discernable talents at all.
Whether having a talent (including being appeciative of birds, a kind of talent, which all three share) makes your life more or less bearable and more or less pointless is the big issue that Chris Freddi slyly addresses while telling his darkly comic story. Throw in some examinations of sacrifice and self-sacrifice, and of morality issues regarding how extreme a direct action can be against something you disagree with and the book starts to sound pretty heavy going.
Nothing could be further from the truth and our foul-mouthed, frequently unpleasant (not to mention murderous) narrator is a funny and often engaging companion. The episode with the undercover tax inspector is especially funny, but absurd humour runs right through the book.
Only at one place did I feel Freddi puts a foot wrong: the description of Bish's glee at seeing a policewoman is a wheelchair, while clearly designed to prove these characters are spikey and edgy, not cuddly and safe, was just too unpleasant for me.
The rather open ending can be read as uplifting or depressing as the reader wishes, but at the very least contains the possibility of redemption. I was reminded, in tone and in scope, if in nothing else, of another debut novel, Iris Murcoch's pitch-perfect "Under The Net."
This writer should win lots of awards. The jacket is brilliant too!
Overall I didn't enjoy it that much. Just too weird.
It does not rate 1 star, but you cannot award less, my advice is don't waste your money.