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28 September 1989
... I began to notice it happening when I was working on the door of the Café de Paris. A new drug called Extasy arrived from New York, Fat Tony started playing some new records from Chicago. That was house music. It was called house music because you could make it in your house – it was supposed to be home-made. It shared the egalitarian gesture of DIY with punk but was no artless three-chord thrash ...

In Service

Anthony Thwaite

18 May 1989
The Remains of the Day 
by Kazuo Ishiguro.
Faber, 245 pp., £10.99, May 1989, 0 571 15310 0
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I served the King of England 
by Bohumil Hrabal, translated by Paul Wilson.
Chatto, 243 pp., £12.95, May 1989, 0 7011 3462 3
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Beautiful Mutants 
by Deborah Levy.
Cape, 90 pp., £9.95, May 1989, 0 224 02651 8
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When the monster dies 
by Kate Pullinger.
Cape, 173 pp., £10.95, May 1989, 9780224026338
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The Colour of Memory 
by Geoff Dyer.
Cape, 228 pp., £11.95, May 1989, 0 224 02585 6
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Sexual Intercourse 
by Rose Boyt.
Cape, 160 pp., £10.95, May 1989, 0 224 02666 6
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The Children’s Crusade 
by Rebecca Brown.
Picador, 121 pp., £10.95, March 1989, 0 330 30529 8
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... despair. Later, I came to make distinctions. Deborah Levy’s Beautiful Mutants is recognisably a prose poem, inhabited by characters who sound as if they have survived from some old Third Programme verse play circa 1950 – The Poet, The Prostitute, The Banker, The Golden Slut etc. It is also the most self-consciously shocking of the four Cape debuts, though ...

Roses

Stephen Wall

27 June 1991
Regeneration 
by Pat Barker.
Viking, 252 pp., £13.99, May 1991, 0 670 82876 9
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Rose Reason 
by Mary Flanagan.
Bloomsbury, 388 pp., £14.99, April 1991, 0 7475 0888 7
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Rose 
by Rose Boyt.
Chatto, 182 pp., £13.99, April 1991, 0 7011 3728 2
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... such unpretentious immediacy. Economy isn’t a feature of Mary Flanagan’s narrative method in Rose Reason, but then her time-scale is much more extended. Her heroine is born Frances Mullen among Irish Catholics in Florence, Maine. She takes the name Rose at Confirmation: ‘I saw my chance for a new identity and seized ...

Bad Weather

Susie Boyt

6 July 1995
A Match to the Heart: One Woman’s Story of Being Struck by Lightning 
by Gretel Ehrlich.
Fourth Estate, 200 pp., £9.99, February 1995, 1 85702 293 9
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... has in this book is with a stranger anaesthetised on an operating table. The room was cold. Steam rose from the opened cavity. I felt as if I had broken into a hidden cave and come upon rubies ... Looking past skin, red tissue, white bone, into a chest held open by a steel frame, I saw a beating heart. ... both militant and gentle; whether rhythmical or ...

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