Katie Grant

Just a wee drap of paranoia

When James Kelman’s novel, How Late it Was, How Late, won the Booker Prize in 1994, Rabbi Julia Neuberger, one of the judges, objected that the book was ‘just a drunken Scotsman railing against bureaucracy’. The Rabbi will find no more comfort in Kelman’s latest work in which blind Sammy Samuels struggling with Dysfunc- tional Benefit is exchanged for 34-year-old Jeremiah Brown, a ‘Skarrish’ immigrant to Uhmerika (Kelman writes as he speaks, which may be a problem for those unfamiliar with ‘Glesga patter’)railing against life as a Red Card Class III ‘unassimilatit alien furnir’.

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