Starter for Ten by David Nicholls.
I enjoyed ‘Us’ so much that I just had to read this. It’s been on my Kindle for ages, and after favouring my beloved paperbacks for so long, I felt that I needed to show my Kindle so TLC. Starter for Ten is follows Brian, a working class boy who’s about to embark on life at University. Something his widowed mother isn’t looking forward to and his two friends Tone and Spencer seem to be giving him a lot of stick about.
Through fashion faux pas and bad first impressions, Brian finds himself at a party where he sees and falls in love with Alice Harbinson. It becomes Brian’s ambition to make her fall in love with him. But of course this being a David Nicholls book, it’s not all plain sailing. When an opportunity comes to up to appear on University Challenge, something that has been a lifelong dream of Brian’s. He sees it as an opportunity to get closer to Alison, but instead he finds himself ostracising himself from the obsessive team captain Patrick, and making incredibly awkward statements to teammate Lucy Chang.
But behind the humour and the toe curling awkwardness is a novel that focuses very much on young people. Trying to find their place in the world, certain of what they think they want to be and then realising that they’re wrong. At the very centre of the novel are the subtle ways in which David Nicholls deals with the death of Brian’s father. Something which Brian seems to rarely acknowledge, but actually it’s in his lack of acceptance that some of the nicer and more heart breaking moments happen.
Although undoubtedly well written, I just didn’t feel as though the characters in this were as well developed and predicted some of the things that happened.
Star Rating out of 5: 3
‘And it occurs to me that I’m not clever at all, that in fact I am without doubt the most ignorant, the most profoundly and hopelessly stupid person in the whole world.’
Happy reading lovely book folk.