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Captain’s Log

John Torode, 21 April 1983

Back from the Brink: An Apocalyptic Experience 
by Michael Edwardes.
Collins, 301 pp., £9.95, March 1983, 0 00 217074 4
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... Diminutive but perfectly formed’ was the phrase coined by Private Eye to describe Sir Michael Edwardes. It stuck because it caught the mechanical, wind-up, less-than-life quality of the man who ‘turned British Leyland round’ To me he was always a character out of Thunderbirds, the television series in which assorted automata glide round the globe, programmed to mouth platitudes and do down the much more human baddies ...

Through Plate-Glass

Ian Sansom: Jonathan Coe, 10 May 2001

The Rotters’ Club 
by Jonathan Coe.
Viking, 405 pp., £14.99, April 2001, 0 670 89252 1
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... kitsch but he also does politics: The Rotters’ Club concerns itself with the Grunwick strike, Michael Edwardes and British Leyland, and the Birmingham pub bombing. Coe is only ever content with full context. His words can seem like a means to an end. They remind. They point things out. They are not themselves intended to impress. His prose is neat-o ...

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