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Books by Jonathan Coe

  • Middle England

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: BYIAA
    Paperback
    Jonathan Coe's Middle England is a novel that tries to make sense of Brexit Britain...

    Since the referendum, the county has changed and cracks have been appearing both within families and between generations. In the Midlands, Benjamin Trotter is trying to help his elderly father navigate a Britain that seems to have forgotten he exists, while in London his friend Doug doesn't understand why his teenage daughter is eternally enraged.

    Meanwhile, newlyweds Sophie and Ian can find nothing to agree on except the fact that their marriage is on the rocks .
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  • The Rotters' Club

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFJI
    Paperback
    Jonathan Coe's widely acclaimed novel is set in the 1970s against a distant backdrop of strikes, terrorist attacks and growing racial tension. A group of young friends inherit the editorship of their school magazine and begin to put their own distinctive spin onto events in the wider world. A zestful comedy of personal and social upheaval, The Rotters' Club captures a fateful moment in British politics - the collapse of 'Old Labour' - and imagines its impact on the topsy-turvy world of the bemused teenager: a world in which a lost pair of swimming trunks can be just as devastating as an IRA bomb.
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  • The Rotters' Club

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: BXYFD
    Paperback
    'Sometimes I feel that I am destined always to be offstage whenever the main action occurs. That God has made me the victim of some cosmic practical joke, by assigning me little more than a walk-on part in my own life . . .' Coming of age in 1970s' Birmingham, teenager Benjamin Trotter is about to discover the agonies and ecstasies of growing up. Whether it is first love or last rites, IRA bombs or industrial strife, prog versus punk rock, expectations of bad poetry or an unexpected life-changing experience involving lost swimming trunks, The Rotters' Club is a heartfelt and hilarious portrait of a particular time and place featuring characters recognisable the world over . . . 'Very funny, a compulsive and gripping read' The Times 'Hugely entertaining' The Observer 'A book to cherish, a book to reread, a book to buy for all your friends' Independent on Sunday
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  • The Story of Gulliver

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: BSZPU
    Paperback
    "For the first time in his life, Gulliver felt ashamed of himself and his fellow-humans." Gulliver is a travel-hungry and adventurous ship's doctor, who has the odd misfortune of being shipwrecked four times in as many voyages. Through Jonathan Coe's expert retelling of Swift's famous satire about our human hubris and desires, today's young readers are swept along as Gulliver finds himself a giant among tiny humans in Lilliput; a tiny human among giants in Brobdignag; on the flying island of Laputa, with its most impractical intellectuals; and finally in the land of the Houyhnhnms, talking horses who think precious little of human "Yahoos".
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  • What a Carve Up!

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AUOHG
    Paperback
    The hilarious 1980s political satire by Jonathan Coe, published as a Penguin Essential for the first time. It is the 1980s and the Winshaw family are getting richer and crueller by the year: Newspaper-columnist Hilary gets thousands for telling it like it isn't; Henry's turning hospitals into car parks; Roddy's selling art in return for sex; down on the farm Dorothy's squeezing every last pound from her livestock; Thomas is making a killing on the stock exchange; and Mark is selling arms to dictators. But once their hapless biographer Michael Owen starts investigating the family's trail of greed, corruption and immoral doings, the time growing ripe for the Winshaws to receive their comeuppance...This wickedly funny take on life under the Thatcher government was the winner of the 1995 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize 'A sustained feat of humour, suspense and polemic, full of twists and ironies' Hilary Mantel, Sunday Times 'A riveting social satire on the chattering and all-powerful upper classes' Time Out 'Big, hilarious, intricate, furious, moving' Guardian
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  • Number 11

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: ASOKK
    Paperback
    A novel about the hundreds of tiny connections between the public and private worlds and how they affect us all. It's about the legacy of war and the end of innocence. It's about how comedy and politics are battling it out and comedy might have won. It's about how 140 characters can make fools of us all. It's about living in a city where bankers need cinemas in their basements and others need food banks down the street. It is Jonathan Coe doing what he does best -- showing us how we live now. "Coe is among the handful of novelists who can tell us something about the temper of our times". (Observer).
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  • The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFKJ
    Paperback
    Maxwell Sim seems to have hit rock bottom: separated from his wife and daughter, estranged from his father, and with no one to confide in even though he has 74 friends on Facebook. He's not even sure whether he's got a job until suddenly a strange business proposition comes his way which involves a long journey to the Shetland Isles - and a voyage into his family's past which throws up some surprising revelations. A story for our times, Maxwell finds himself at sea in the modern world, surrounded by social networks but unable to relate properly to anyone.
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  • The Dwarves of Death

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFKI
    Paperback
    Music, murder ...and Madeleine. William has a lot on his mind. Firstly there's The Alaska Factory, the band he plays in. They're no good and they make his songs sound about as groovy as an unpressed record. Secondly, there's Madeleine, his high-maintenance girlfriend whose idea of a night of passion is an Andrew Lloyd Webber musical followed by a doorstep peck on the cheek. Maybe they're not soulmates after all? Lastly, there's the bizarre murder he's just witnessed. A man lies bludgeoned to death at his feet and, unfortunately for William, there aren't too many other suspects standing nearby...
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  • The Closed Circle

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFKB
    Paperback
    On Millennium night, with Blair presiding over a superficially cool, sexed-up new version of the country, Benjamin Trotter finds himself watching the celebrations on his parents' TV. Watching, in fact, his younger brother, Paul, now a bright young New Labour MP who has bought wholeheartedly into the Blairite dream. Neither of them can know that their lives are about to implode. Set against the backdrop of a changing Britain and the country's increasingly compromised role in America's 'war against terrorism', the characters struggle to make sense of the perennial problems of love, vocation and family.
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  • The House of Sleep

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFKA
    Paperback
    Sarah is a narcoleptic who has dreams so vivid she mistakes them for real events; Robert has had his life changed for ever by the misunderstandings arising from her condition; Terry, the insomniac, spends his wakeful nights fuelling his obsession with movies; and the increasingly unstable Dr Gregory Dudden sees sleep as a life-shortening disease which must be eradicated. A group of students sharing a house. They fall in and out of love, they drift apart. Yet a decade later they are drawn back together by a series of coincidences involving their obsession with sleep - and each other...
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  • What a Carve Up!

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFJZ
    Paperback
    This is a brilliant noir farce, a dystopian vision and the story of an obsession. Michael is a lonely, rather pathetic writer, obsessed by the film, 'What A Carve Up!' in which a mad knifeman cuts his way through the inhabitants of a decrepit stately pile as the thunder rages. Inexplicably, Michael is commissioned to write the family history of the Winshaws, an upper class Yorkshire clan whose members have a finger in every establishment pie. But as a murderous maniac stalks the family, Michael realizes that his favourite film is coming true.
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  • The Rain Before it Falls

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFJY
    Paperback
    'What I want you to have, Imogen, above all, is a sense of your own history; a sense of where you come from, and of the forces that made you.' Rosamund lies dying in her remote Shropshire home. But before she does so, she has one last task: to put on tape not just her own story but the story of the young blind girl, her cousin's granddaughter, who turned up mysteriously at her party all those years ago. This is a story of generations, of the relationships within a family - and of what goes to make a child.
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  • Expo 58

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFJX
    Paperback
    Expo 58 by Jonathan Coe - Spies, girls and an Englishman abroad. Trust no one. London, 1958: unassuming civil servant Thomas Foley is plucked from his desk job and sent on a six-month trip to Brussels. His task: to keep an eye on The Britannia, a brand new pub which will form the heart of the British presence at Expo 58 - the biggest World's Fair of the century. As soon as he arrives, Thomas is equally bewitched by the surreal, gigantic Atomium, which stands at the heart of this brave new world, and by Anneke, a lovely Flemish hostess. But Thomas' new-found sense of freedom comes at a price: two British spies are following him. For fans of Jonathan Coe's classic comic bestsellers What a Carve Up! and The Rotters' Club, this hilarious new novel, which is set in the Mad Men period of the mid 50s, will also be loved by readers of Nick Hornby, William Boyd and Ian McEwan. "Clever and funny, enthralling and moving. Wonderful!" (Daily Mail). "Rich and splendidly comic". (Independent). Jonathan Coe was born in Birmingham in 1961. Expo 58 is his tenth novel. The previous nine are all available in Penguin: The Accidental Woman, A Touch of Love, The Dwarves of Death, What a Carve Up! (which won the 1995 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize), The House of Sleep (which won the 1998 Prix Medicis Etranger), The Rotters' Club (winner of the Everyman Wodehouse Prize), The Closed Circle, The Rain Before It Falls and The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim. His biography of the novelist B.S. Johnson, Like a Fiery Elephant, won the 2005 Samuel Johnson Prize for best non-fiction book of the year.
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  • A Touch of Love

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFJK
    Paperback
    Robin, a postgrad student in Coventry, has spent four and a half years not writing his thesis. Now it languishes in a drawer, and Robin hides in his room, increasingly frightened by a world he doesn't understand. His friends have failed him and romance eludes him. His only outlet is his short stories, scribbled in notebooks and expressing his secret obsessions and frustrations. Then, when an unfortunate and embarassing incident in a public park lands him in serious trouble, Robin's life finally spirals out of control...
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  • The Accidental Woman

    Jonathan Coe

    Product Code: AKFJJ
    Paperback
    For Maria, nothing is certain. Her life is a chain of accidents. Friendship passes her by, and she's unimpressed by the devoted Ronny and his endless proposals of marriage. Maria lives in a world of her own - yet not of her own making. Stumbling through university, work, marriage and motherhood, she finds it hard to see what all the fuss is about. Will she ever be able to control the direction of her life? Or will it end, as it began, by accident? What does chance have in store for the accidental woman?
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