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Reheated Cabbage


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Hilarious, shocking and hugely entertaining, Reheated Cabbage has all the classic Irvine Welsh ingredients

About the Author

Irvine Welsh is the author of ten previous novels and four books of shorter fiction. He currently lives in Chicago.


Welsh returns to the world of drug-ingesting, lager-swigging and "fitba"-loving Scotsmen in this hilarious collection from his Trainspotting years. The material may be old, but the slang still sings in these stories of scrappers attempting to become lords of whatever tiny domain they can conquer. There's Trainspotting's volatile Begbie, at his mom's house for Christmas and trying to endure his sister's new beau in "Elpseth's Boyfriend." In "A Fault on the Line," Malky doesn't want to let anything-not even a horrific accident-stop him from missing the kickoff of a footie match. These stories of blustering, emotionally befuddled men and the luckless women who love them also includes less traditional (for Welsh) fare, like "The Rosewell Incident," in which an alien race learns about Earth culture from a Scottish hood, and "I Am Miami," about a retired Scottish school teacher who runs into a pair of disgruntled former pupils in Miami. Welsh shines most brilliantly when portraying his solipsistic Scots head-butting the rock-hard ceiling in hopes of escaping, be it through booze, drugs, soccer or sex, from a violent world that offers little peace but plenty of humor. (Sept.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

It's good to be brought back to Welsh's original hellfire * Observer *
The stories combine sly humour with the tang of lived experience. It makes for a terrific collection, showcasing a writer who...has blossomed into one of the most distinctive, and distinguished, observers of British life * Sunday Telegraph *
A total hoot to read. The first thing that strikes you about much of the material here is the amazing energy of Welsh's writing * Independent on Sunday *
Welsh's work remains at once moving, repellent and worryingly funny * TLS *
Full of fun, frenzy and filth -- Sebastian Shakespeare * Tatler *

The film Trainspotting (based on one of Welsh's short stories) is best watched with subtitles; few Americans can follow the Scottish characters' slang, accent, and speed of delivery. Welsh's fiction, of course, comes with no subtitles, and readers will have to "ken" phonetically what's happening. Welsh's scenarios flash lurid as the lights at dance clubs: a snort of drugs and haze of drinks mixed with a promise of sex. The writing's all dialog driven, and you'll be hard-pressed to find even a bare description such as "vanilla sand." We get eight stories here, seven of which are reprints from Welsh's prefame and novel-writing days. The book's title and cover art of a rat fleeing the scene should clue you in as to what to expect. The stories carry much of young men's pitfalls-violence, homophobia, and overindulgence but with a reckless, dangerous charisma. But the last story, "I Am Miami," strikes a more mature note with its aging characters reconsidering the DJ scene. Verdict Readers of cult fiction with a specific, male, lurid sense of place-Hubert Selby Jr., Nelson Algren, or even Chuck Palahniuk-will enjoy the lacerating humor here.-Travis Fristoe, Alachua Cty. Lib. Dist., FL Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

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