Nigel Fountain

Days Like These

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When John Raven purchases some old photographs in a junk shop, little does he know the havoc that will ensue. First he’s leaned on by some heavies, then his flat is ransacked. Somebody desperately wants those photographs back. But why?

And what connects the murder of a Russian immigrant in the East End of London in 1908 with the bombing of an MP’s house seven decades later? As Raven sifts through clues, he is unwittingly drawn into a brutal drama, uncovering a thread of evil that stretches across time — and into the core of the establishment.

A political thriller unlike any other, Days Like These is ‘a mix of John Buchan, Hitchcock, fascist conspiracy and grunge topography’ (Iain Sinclair) suffused in the milieu of the political activism of Lonon in the late 1970s.

‘Realistic and entertaining when concerned with our hero the socialist hack, and some energetic socio-political action’ Marcel Berlins, The Times

‘Revives the figure of the lone individual searching for truth most familiar from the private eye novel and places him at the heart of radical politics in London. By allowing his narrator to be a liberal, timid of political over-involvement, Fountain makes room for a dispassionate evocation of left political life in London. Meetings in pubs, violent confrontation with neo-fascists, bookshop browsing, all sardonically observed, are linked together by the key bus-routes on Fountain’s London map, the 38 and the 253’

20,000 Streets Under the Sky: The London Novel, 1896–1985, Southbank, 1986, Curators, Nick Kimberley & Ken Worpole

‘Fountain's historical feel is subtle but precise… There are no trite ant-fascist heroics; the left-wingers in this book live lives of thwarted decency, loath (actual) bodily harm and are consumed with self-lacerating integrity… terse, witty and genuinely scary; the best yet of the new wave thrillers’

David Widgery

‘If you are intrigued by the tatty London the tourist guides ignore and go for reluctant seedy heroes who can sniff a mystery and doggedly track nasties, ancient and modern, start Days Like These and hold on tight’

Sheila Rowbotham
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275 printed pages

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