Barney Thomson, Lindsay’s serial killing barber, who apparently never actually killed anyone, makes a return in this humorous novella.
As the Blasted Heath website blurbs.......... December 2009. MPs are being murdered in revenge attacks for the expenses scandal, and Westminster is in a state of turmoil. With the government on the verge of collapse, the last Labour Prime Minister — desperately clinging to power —decides there is only one way to reclaim the government’s authority. Relying on dubious intelligence, he instructs the Army to make plans to launch an invasion of the eastern seaboard of the United States of America. As humanity stands on the brink of war, it may well be that we have reached the End of Days.
Thomson is summoned from isolation in the arse end of nowhere, to apply his supreme hair-dressing skills to an out of sorts British PM. Thomson reluctantly enters the PM’s inner circle and dispenses wisdom (or pish) – depending on your standpoint - to the PM; as well as the world class haircuts.
Murders, climate conferences, more murders, a US invasion, more haircuts, a spell banged up when in the frame for the killings....... Barney endures ever-increasing absurdities, whilst pining for a return to his Scottish retreat.
I don’t think Lindsay could ever be accused of taking himself too seriously, but whilst the story verges on pantomime at times, he delivers a few sharp jabs to the ruling elite, in particular the ever-increasing reliance on spin and presentation - style over substance.
I wouldn’t say that this book will stay long in the memory, but as a funny, entertaining diversion for a few hours it has a lot to recommend it. I’d rate is as a 3.5 out of 5 stars.
In the interests of transparency, I got this as a freebie from the publisher – Blasted Heath as an incentive to sign up for their regular newsletter. I’m unsure if this is still available for free as an offer, but I wouldn’t put anyone off investing a quid or two in it from Amazon. This is the second Lindsay offering I have read this month, the first being We Are The Hanged Man, and I’ve been enamoured enough with his writing to recently purchase another of his books – Lost In Juarez......looking forward to it sometime soon!