By Simon Crump
Published Jan 2010
Three novellas stamped with a surreal, hilarious and often moving humanity. Crump lures us into caring about his characters, sometimes in spite of ourselves, through a sustained and delicate use of domestic detail.
In ‘Monkey’s Birthday’ we get to know the inhabitants of a street through their houses and the bizarre objects, memories and longings which furnish them. In ‘English Electric’ Crump grips us with the tension of not quite knowing how the main character is linked to the death of a young girl. ‘Early Doors’ is pure Carry On; where people really are disgusting and duplicitous; where people suffer the outrageous accidents that befall them; where people die and we feel bereft. And when the hatchet falls, as it inevitably does, the strength of Crump’s writing is confirmed by how deeply we care.