Let Them Come Through by Neil Forsyth
|Let Them Come Through by Neil Forsyth|
|Genre: General Fiction|
|Reviewer: Loralei Haylock|
|Summary: A gritty, funny, sometimes tragic story about corruption and fading celebrity. You'll never enjoy existing among such a grotty cast more.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 304||Date: August 2009|
|Publisher: Serpent's Tail|
Nick Santini spent most of his childhood conning the drunken patrons of his father's bar out of their beer money and spending it on cider. With patchy schooling, an abusive father and no real talents beyond his ability to lie, career choices for Nick were few and far between, so when a friend gives him some money to break free, Nick spends it on an office in Soviet Street, hires a secretary, and advertises his services as a medium.
Soon Nick is turning over money enough for a comfortable living, reassuring hapless clients about the souls of their dead cats. Then Tony comes along with big ideas. Tours, theatres, television series, and truly large amounts of money.
Sucked into the world of celebrity after a tragedy makes his continued existence at Soviet Street difficult, Nick should have made his millions. But, Tony has been stealing from him since their first tour together, and his TV show has been cancelled after executives learned of the tragedy. With only murky assurances that it will be put back on after six months of lying low, Nick's future looks uncertain.
The black girl was meant to change that. A fading starlet herself, their arranged 'romance' was meant to boost both their floundering careers. Only she turns up dead just days after she and Nick were conveniently photographed together. Now Nick has the police on his back, lead by corrupt officer Brewster. Nick's only weapon against the forces working against him is his silver tongue, but how is he going to talk his way out of this one?
This is a very funny book. From the spirits of dead cats to Nick's hapless dealings with Tony's thievery, there are passages throughout that had me giggling. However, the comic aspect emerges from between what is a gritty and absorbing story. Forsyth's characters are all neck deep in a world of corruption. From Tony's stealing, Nick's Father's gambling habits, Brewster's blackmailing and Nick's lies to his trusting clients, everyone is flawed and corrupt.
Everything in the story feels real and believable, and the dark, sometimes tragic, aspects of the plot and characters only make the humour even better. The characterisation is perfect, and you'll never enjoy existing among such a grotty cast more.
It does jump around a bit, which takes a bit of getting used too, but the 'when and where are we?' issues don't last long into the story. Soon you'll be too gripped to really care, and the various threads of plot weave together by the end in a satisfying round up. The font change to differentiate between past and present seems a little unnecessary, but it doesn't spoil anything.
This first foray into fiction for Forsyth is a huge success and I look forwards to his next offering.
My thanks to the publisher for sending a copy.
If Neil Forsyth's humour appeals, you should definitely check out his non-fiction work Delete This At Your Peril, an account of email conversations, under the pseudonym Bob Servant, with spammers.
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