There was something disappointing about the Giant Panda , there was nothing disappointing about The Bookies Runner.
I've known about the book for a long time, Brendan suggested I read it months ago and I've read articles where Cally Phillips has praised it to the heavens and yet I didn't read it until today.
I even decided to read his new book before I read this one. I can't put my finger on the reason why I waited so long, if I was to be honest I think that I had a preconceived Idea that I wouldn't enjoy it. As so often with my gut instinct I was terribly wrong.
I decided to read the book today in order to vote for it in the Peoples Book Prize. I wanted to vote having read it and in good conscience. Rather than just ticking a box because I know Brendan (kind of).
The Bookies Runner is one of the bravest books I've ever had the pleasure of reading. To write so honestly about one's family as Brendan does must be very difficult, especially when the content isn't all positive.
There are some wonderful stories within the book, without ruining it for others my personal favourite involved looking for coins under the Forth Bridge.
The book is beautifully honest without being brutal. I think the thing that I find most impressive about this book is that it feels like Brendan isn't trying to impress anyone with his writing, he's just looking to tell an honest story and I suppose that's what great writing really is, and the Bookies Runner is a great piece of literature.
It was a pleasure to read and my vote has been cast with gusto.