Tough Tough Toys For Tough Tough Boys – reader reviews

7 reader reviews

“There are two distinctive characteristics that make Will Self’s writing what it is : his idiosyncratic prose and his outlandish concepts. The language Self uses can be off-putting. The prose is deliberately dense in places, almost as if it is put up as a challenge – Self has publicly derided lazy readers. But his verbosity cannot be dismissed as simple posturing – it is an intrinsic part of his style. The turns of phrase and intricate metaphors he uses in Tough, Tough Toys .. are frequently delightful. In terms of Self’s bizarre, surreal concepts, the short story collection allows him to showcase more, if not taking them fully to conclusion. ‘Dave Too’ and ‘A Story For Europe’ are possibly the weak links here, with entertaining touches but a sense of incompleteness. The other stories are more forceful. The linked opening and closing stories, ‘The Lump of Crack as Big as the Ritz’ and ‘The Nonce Prize’, work strong characters and narrative around the idea of a mythical-sized lump of crack cocaine, while the title story is an intense and desperate tale of macho obsession. For me, it is ‘Caring, Sharing’ that provides the ultimate example of the vicious satire that gives Self his bite. By their nature, short story collections are often less satisfying than novels, but by the sheer imagination that Self possessess, Tough, Tough Toys.. does not disappoint. ” – Alan Rutter

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