The Little Green Man by Simon Armitage

The Little Green Man

Simon Armitage

'Bloke-Lit' filled with humour and horror. Barney, estranged from his wife and autistic son, seeks out his childhood friends and embarks on a game of outrageous dares. An engrossing and sensitive look at relationships in a new century.

Extract

There can't be a better reunion for five old mates than a game of five-a-side - it's made to measure. We turned up the following Friday, entered the knockout and got hammered 18-2 in the first round by a team of shelf stackers from Asda. Afterwards in the showers, I couldn't help looking. Winkie, with his little dick and the makings of a pot belly; Pompus, with a full-blown beer belly and the turquoise spot on his left cheek where he was shot; Tony football, going thin on top, with a bottle of shampoo in one hand and conditioner under his arm, covered in lather, as if milk were bubbling out of a hole on the top of his head; Stubbs letting the water blast against his face.

In the bar we sat in a half circle overlooking the baths. Pompus pulled up a chair and took a long drag on his fag. 'That's better, is that.'

'We should do this every week,' I said.

They were all drinking up, playing with their car keys saying how we'd have to keep in touch and all the rest of it when I said. 'Look gents, do yourselves a favour and come back to mine. I've got something to show you.'

Parallels
  • White City Blue by Tim Lott
  • About a Boy by Nick Hornby

Books with similar mood

Talk of the Town

Jacob Polley

Heartbreak

Craig Raine

Falling Out of Cars

Jeff Noon

Bangkok 8

John Burdett

Silent House

Orhan Pamuk

Seven Houses in France

Bernardo Atxaga

The Warsaw Anagrams

Richard Zimler

Tiny Ladies

Adam Klein

I Have Waited, and You Have Come

Martine McDonagh

Skin Lane

Neil Bartlett

Black Waltz

Patricia Melo

Broken River

J Robert Lennon

The Most Intimate Place

Rosemary Furber

We Need to Talk About Kevin

Lionel Shriver

Down and Out in Shoreditch and Hoxton

Stewart Home

Camera

Eva-Marie Liffner

City

Alessandro Baricco

Super-Cannes

J G Ballard

Beast

Matt Wesolowski

Bricks and Mortar

Clemens Meyer

An Experiment in Compassion

Des Dillon

Born under Punches

Martyn Waites

Sleep Toward Heaven

Amanda Eyre Ward

The Nudist Colony

Sarah May

The Deposition of Father McGreevy

Brian O'Doherty

Pelikan

David Lozell Martin

Tough, Tough Toys for Tough, Tough Boys

Will Self

The Dead of Summer

Camilla Way

The Incarnations

Susan Barker

Captain of the Steppe

Oleg Pavlov

Down the Rabbit Hole

Juan Pablo Villalobos

Fire on the Mountain

Terry Bisson

The Bad News Bible

Anna Blundy

Nail and Other Stories

Laura Hird

Lucifer

Michael Cordy

Affinity

Sarah Waters

Schopenhauer's Telescope

Gerard Donovan

Inland

Téa Obreht

The Visionist

Rachel Urquhart

The Story of my Assassins

Tarun J Tejpal

The Long Song

Andrea Levy

The Voyage of the Short Serpent

Bernard Du Boucheron

Harem

Barbara Nadel

He Kills Coppers

Jake Arnott

Poachers

Tom Franklin

Native Rites

David Hewson

The Woman Who Knew Too Much

B Reece Johnson

Weight Loss

Upamanyu Chatterjee

Swansong

Kerry Andrew