The Gripes of Wrath - Simon Carr

This slightly Daily-Mail-sounding book is "guaranteed to make your blood boil", consisting of a great list of the unfairnesses of modern life. And it does contain a fair amount of silly court verdicts, and complaints about people misusing their Human Rights, but on the whole it's not actually a big pile of reactionary ramblings. It's written by Simon Carr, who after a few pages you might have guessed is an Indie columnist. There's certainly enough material sourced from "Independent sketch"es. Basically, his bugbear is the combination of nannying and lying brought about by the current government. So, the book is really a poorly disguised critique of the current style of government. At that, it's quite effective, possibly helped by the fact that the current government has managed to pile up more 'sleaze' than even the previous Tory government. Pretty good going, really.

Anyway, it's a fairly fun Christmas-present-style book for the average politician-hater (mysteriously, it's rather light on self-righteous contempt for, say, journalists). So, why am I reviewing it now? Rather embarassingly, this is because it was a Christmas present from my Grandmother, and I've only just read it. I have a slightly non-trivial book backlog. Expect a few more Christmas-present reviews shortly....

Posted 2006-08-06.