The Tap Dancer (Paperback)
  • The Tap Dancer (Paperback)
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The Tap Dancer (Paperback)

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£9.99
Paperback 240 Pages
Published: 20/07/2023
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‘My favourite novel and one I wish I’d written.’ ALAN BENNETT

Winner of the McKitterick Prize for best first novel by an author aged over 40, and the Hawthornden Prize for imaginative literature.

Everyone craves retirement from the Civil Service, don’t they? That time for an ageing patriarch to enjoy the fruits of a well-earned pension and the respect of his family; maybe even to indulge in a love of music halls and metropolitan life. If only people would listen and do as they were told…

His fourth son William, the long-suffering narrator, is the constant butt of his father’s jokes and victim of his brothers’ indifference. But as death, divorce and other darker dramas follow, father and son slowly establish a strange harmony.

Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
ISBN: 9780008619176
Number of pages: 240
Weight: 200 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 20 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

‘It’s hilariously funny; it’s also really weird – a bit like English people.’ India Knight ‘There’s no other novel quite like it. Andrew Barrow has the most curious, in both senses, comic ear and, as if by magic, can turn everyday speech into the stuff of sublime comedy.’ Craig Brown ‘Andrew Barrow’s The Tap Dancer … must be my favourite novel and one I wish I’d written.’ Alan Bennett ‘Andrew Barrow’s first novel is reminiscent of John Mortimer’s A Voyage Round My Father. Both are portraits of ageing patriarchs whose behaviour is outrageously self-centred but who retain a place in their children’s affections by their sheer eccentricity.’ Sunday Telegraph ‘A comic masterpiece … Andrew Barrow’s insight into the minutiae of English family life is absolutely brilliant … his ear for dialogue is matchless … this is a great literary creation.’ Spectator ‘Weird but wonderful first novel … brilliantly funny … horribly true.’ Harpers & Queen ‘A magnificent creation … Could rank alongside Mr Pooter and Nancy Mitford’s Uncle Matthew.’ Independent ‘All the characters, even the minor ones, are perfectly realised, thanks largely to Barrow’s remarkable skill at pinpointing the social and psychological undercurrents of casual conversation.’ Times Literary Supplement ‘Father, tap dancing weirdly across the kitchen in moments of glee, has immense vitality … A comic masterpiece.’ Financial Times

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“Dark fun”

The best book I’ve read this year, I didn’t want it to end. I thought of Larkin’s lines on parents and also interviews with Francis Bacon about the damage inflicted unintentionally by his family. A completely... More

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