The Beach Beneath The Pavement

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In 2008 The Beach Beneath The Pavement (previously titled Bombs & Puppets) entered the Top Five and thus became a ‘Best Seller’ on the Arts Council backed YouWriteOn and Harper Collins’ Authonomy web sites.

Here are some of the comments it received (and I don’t even know these people) :

This is utterly intriguing, well paced and beautifully written. It is also wonderfully louche.”

“I would pick this up in the store in a second...This is a just slightly over-the-top satire/thriller that succeeds on both fronts... Bernard and Danny are two former True Believers who've had their wings clipped by life. They could be deeply depressing characters. That makes them ripe for comedy, whee!, and you make them very, very funny, with an obvious deep understanding of the social/intellectual landscape that they're coming from”

“Why on earth haven't i read this before? It's so good. I've just finished the third chapter and apart from the immediate response of just gulping down the words because the story is pulling me along so swiftly I am also hugely impressed by what you are doing with the words. There is such assurance in your great figurative language... what I like even more, is your sense of restraint. The linguistic pyrotechnics are so carefully embedded in strong accomplished, flowing prose that the narration is fast and uncluttered. Your skill here is like a master class.”

Tight prose, smart, and flawless -- a great read with a fabulous sense of humor. Wonderful.”

“.. smart, funny, caustic... A sardonic, subversive take on all things New Age and the futility of belief. Excellent. Nuff said.”

I can sum this book up in one word. Mindblowing! “

“It's a wonderful mixture of absurdism, politics, philosophy and hipness... a style that is wonderfully slick, and a playfulness with and enjoyment of language so lacking in much fiction.”

“It joins the strands of narrative, characterisation and plot in a way which is superbly professional and richly deserving of publication, fame, fortune and a thin little government file on the author somewhere... captured the zeitgeist absolutely perfectly. Post-credibility is a fantastic concept - we know they're lying, but they've given us credit cards so we don't give a shit. And now that we're all fed up with dinner party conversations about house values and Tuscany, there is a growing popularity in all things alternative, which corporate powers will doubtless pounce upon and exploit before society can catch up with it.”

“It feels like you put The Matrix, Iain Banks and a healthy slosh of Amis into this Bloody Mary, but the spirit is all your own. The disaffected heroes, Cynicism and Pessimism, have substance and interest. The philosophy behind it is what really makes this exciting, but I have to say, detailed settings, colourful (if not entirely trustworthy) characters and a plot so tightly tied to your concept shakes something special from the mix.”

“A master story-teller at the top of his game.”

“This is a historical novel about now: 'The Era of Post-Credibility.'

Post-everything philosophy, perfectionist costume detail, the minutiae of middle-class drug uptake, urban bombs, mechanised newspapers, the whiff of arrant sexism flip-siding male failure - it's all so well done.

If this book ever makes it into mainstream publication the author will doubtless be sued, with good reason. The rest of us will be too busy laughing as the doom-laden Bernard makes his phantasmagoric journey though 21st-century liggerland. Shamefully funny. Bloody funny. Very, very funny.”

“Sous les pavés la plage!

In this extravagant philosophical satire, dark comedy with a whiff of post-modernism, the lost dreams of the 60s and 70s are corrupted to the point where only mad or dangerous people believe in anything. The pulverised ideals of a dematerialised culture result in rampant paranoia and conspiracy theories. New Age panaceas abound. The Human Company plans a pageant to inflame London's streets, but in the background the ever present Tranquility Foundation grows more and more sinister.

Denning's `Beach Beneath the Pavement' leaves British satire behind to embrace a fresher more European perspective. The writing is strongly visual and the narrative erupts as a cavalcade of small `happenings,'events construed to thwart the attempts of dissolute journalist, Bernard Hawks, to keep a low profile, and find `Animal' a beautiful and crazy girl terrorist. As I laughed through in two sittings --it is unputdownable-- I was reminded of an animation film, The Wall, by Gerald Scarfe. Dilwyn and Animal are unforgettable characters, while Bernard Hawks could be destined to cult hero status.”

“A friend recommended this to me. Glad he did - I flew through it. Witty. Swiftly-paced. Clever. Timely. There's knowledge in here, and Denning doesn't beat you over the head with it either.

You can see the characters - everyone from Bernard Hawkes, the catankerous journalist, to his oddball neighbour Dillwyn, to some of the supporting cast in the London offices, junk yards and pubs bars, and the gin-soaked toffs planning revolution from their farm. And hear them too. Well-observed. They're for real.

Treat yourself.”

A nice review on the Wetmachine website - “Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism as Drawing Room Farce”

Another good new review on Booksquawk and here on Dactyl Review.