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Starter for Ten

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I finished this on audiobook on New Year's Eve. I had pretty low expectations of it, having listened to Nicholls' follow up "The Understudy" in 2006 and thinking it easygoing fluff but nothing more.


This is much the superior novel. It's still pretty lightweight, but it had moments where events made me cringe, which is the sort of emotional connection I don't make with every book.


Brian Jackson, the narrator, did remind me of Adrian Mole rather too strongly as a comic creation, especially in his pining for the Pandora-like Alice Harbinson and it is pinpoint accurate in its recreation of 1980s student life. A fun read.

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I read this book a couple of years ago and like you I enjoyed it more than I had expected too. I thought the storyline was cleverly thought out and gripping, and the setting and characters all reminded me very much of my university days in the 80s. I think it has also been made into a film or TV thing - but I haven't seen it.


I've not read his other book 'The Understudy' and I might give it a miss based on what you have said here.

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I read the book a few years ago as well, and while the book was just okay, I did eventually watch the film starring James McAvoy, and it was very funny indeed. Not often a film is better than the book but I would say in this case it is.

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