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Bunker Man

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I've just discovered this book by Duncan Mclean set in the North-East of Scotland...feels like somewhere around Fraserburgh to me...has anyone else read this? Its bloody twisted but incredibly good!

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Bunker man is good, but a bit too twisted for my liking - I've never had much desire to re-read it (which is unusual for me) - Duncan MacLean's first novel "Blackden" is really good too - set in a north-east village which could be Blackburn. His collection of short stories "Bucket of Tongues" is also quite good ("Cold Kebab Breakfast" is one title that springs to mind".

He won a literature prize for either Blackden or Bucket of Tongues, and with the money went on a literary pilgrimage to America to find out more about an American music star called Bob Wills (can't remember the name of the book or the full name of Bob Wills band, or indeed the type of music - Texas Swing is a possibility) It's a great read too - I can remember one quote when he meets someone in a tiny bar in the middle of nowhere who's playing the Proclaimer's "Sunshine on Leith", who asks him.

"Is Leith a state of mind?"

And his reply is "I suppose it is, really"

Great Author - might have to re-read Blackden sometime soon.

Regards

Flossie

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They all differ quite a bit (in that none of them have the descent into madness/perversion that the Bunker Man covers).

Bucket of Tongues - as far as I can remember, most of the stories concern relationships between friends or couples. There are a couple of stories about Aberdeen football casuals - one called "A/Deen Soccer Casuals kick to Kill", which is about a young casual and his older brother meeting to go to the match - the brother is an ex casual, grown up and now working offshore and tries to get through to his brother the pointlessness of his actions. (The title comes from a piece of graffiti on South College Street which was there for years and years.) The other one is called "Druid's shite it, fail to show", which is about the falling out of a group of teenage casuals (in Dyce).

Blackden is a rights of passage story of a teenager's weekend in a small north east village - coming to terms with his job, his family, his friends, etc.

Having consulted the guru of google, the non-fiction one is called "Lone Star Swing" - here's the blurb from a website:

"Using the prize money from his Somerset Maugham Award, Duncan McLean traveled from Orkney, Scotland, to Texas in search of the extraordinary mix of jazz, blues, country, and mariachi that is Western Swing.

This account of his travels takes in barbed-wire museums, onion festivals, hoe-downs, ghost-towns, dead dogs, and ten thousand miles of driving through the Lone Star State. A constant soundtrack of vintage music from bands like the Texas Top Hands, The Lightcrust Doughboys, and the Modern Mountaineers cheers McLean as he tries, with great difficulty, to track down any trace of his greatest heroes: Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys. "

Hope that helps - enjoy

Regards

Flossie

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Thanks so much Flossie. I'm currently reading about three books at once (I always do this!) while writing one of my own, but when all that is done I'll definitely seek out the other McLean tomes!

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