New books are rather like planes coming in to land at an airport. You can see them a long way off, and then when they get closer they have to circle, stacked up waiting for their turn. Early August has a few books coming out, and I don’t want to write about them too early or too late, so I need to get started. Because it’s a first book, I’ll begin with Gods Behaving Badly.
Right, I’ll have to tread carefully here. I have young readers, who I’m sure won’t worry too much about this book by Marie Phillips. After chapter one I thought this’d make a good book for younger readers too. By the first line in chapter two I knew I was wrong. So, by all means, read this book if you’re young. But don’t tell your parents about it!
Though apart from the sex and the frequent use of the f-word this is a good read for everyone. I don’t know when I last enjoyed a new book like this. (Well, I do, but you know what I mean.) The language is light and the plot anything but difficult, and the whole book is very funny. I can hardly believe this is a first novel, it’s so good.
Gods Behaving Badly is all about the old Greek Gods living in north London, and about their cleaner. My understanding of Greek Gods and myths has improved considerably, while I had lots of fun.
If Marie hadn’t written a very witty piece about getting published, in a copy of Publishing News, I probably wouldn’t have bothered. Just before then I had read half of a children’s book about the very same Gods living in New York, and decided to give up as it didn’t deliver what it promised.
So, parents, I’d rather you let your children read this one, because it’s good stuff. I’ve practised on Daughter by letting her read page 147. She’s sort of got used to it now, and may soon be sufficiently desensitized to read the whole book. After all, she goes round quoting the first sentence of chapter 23. But, please, not at school…