Alex Diggins

A draining experience: Insignificance, by James Clammer, reviewed

It’s a hot summer’s day in surburbia and Joseph, a plumber, is trying to cope with blinding migraines and the suspicion that his son might be a murderer

Credit: Alamy

Spare a thought for the white van man. It’s not yet nine on a summer’s morning and already Joseph, a plumber and the hero of James Clammer’s arresting novel, is having a pig of a day.

He’s slept poorly. It’s the umpteenth day of a heat wave, and the biscuits left by his client Amanda Margaret Hollander are ‘a dispiriting selection, childish and sugary… unmanly biscuits’.

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