Title: If You Liked School, You’ll Love Work
Author: Irvine Welsh
Page Count/Review Word Count: 392
It was nice to get back to Irvine Welsh because it’s been a little while now
since I’ve last read him. It was also fun to pick this one up because my cat
picked it out for me for a YouTube video series I do.
What I didn’t realise before getting started with this is that it’s actually
a collection of short stories as opposed to a single novel. Sure, the final
story – Kingdom of Fife – is about the length of a novel and could have held its own as a standalone, but that just made it more fun. I also liked how the characters in that both were and weren’t your typical Irvine Welsh creations. And while I’m not really one for horses, it was also cool how they played a pretty big part in the plot.
I also quite liked Rattlesnakes, the first story in the collection. It’s
about a bunch of people travelling back from a music festival when their car breaks down and they’re forced to camp on the side of the road. One of them is bitten on the penis by a snake and then another one has to try to suck the venom out. Then some shady Mexican youths show up with a gun and all hell breaks loose. It’s a good one.
Really, what this collection does well is present a variety of different
stories that span an impressive range of themes, settings and styles. It proves that Welsh is up there with the best of them, and I take my hat off to my cat for another good pick. Although I will admit that it took me a little while to get into it, especially that final story, which ended up being a cracker.
As with most collections, there are ups and downs here and some of the
stories are better than others. There was plenty enough here for me though, and even though I read it a little bit at a time before bed, I quite enjoyed it. I’m sure that it’s not for everyone, but it scratched an itch for me and has left me looking forward to reading some more.