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Dangerous Parking

Dangerous Parking

(2000)
A novel by

 
It was a classic requirement of the great novelists of the 1930s and 40s to have experienced life at the extremes, with excesses of sex and alcohol as prerequisites. Writing today is, on the whole, safer; and then comes along a book like Stuart Browne's Dangerous Parking. This makes some of the dangerous over-indulgence of the past seen tame indeed--a remarkable, sweeping narrative, shot through with mordant humour, wild eroticism and a resolute good humour in the face of death. And, we're told, with an autobiographical element that gives a particularly sharp edge.

Browne's protagonist Noah Arkwright has abused himself and those around him to such a degree that he is fighting for his life. A successful film maker with a happy family life, he has plunged through the wilder avenues of life to finally face up to some terminal choices, as cancer joins the other threats to his existence. But Noah begins to realise that his love for his wife Clare, a gifted musician, may be the thing that can save him. But is he too late?

However dark the territory Browne takes the reader through (and we are spared little in this raw narrative), the final effect of his highly assured novel is both life-affirming and exhilarating. Humour is always at the centre of Noah's terrifying odyssey and the invigorating, restorative power of music and art acts as a corrective to the self-destructive follies. Noah is not an easy protagonist to live with but we are unable to break the hold his story has upon us. Browne's approach to his text is unique: short, pithy paragraphs and blisteringly precise dialogue combine to devastating effect as in Noah's description of a visit to a Greek Island:
The chips are wet and greasy, an inedible response to tourist demand. Ray's two-fisting his drinks, while I'm pacing myself a little because I have my eye on the young PA fresh out of NYU film programme who I hope I'll make my catch of the day. Around midnight, I lead her off to my room, leaving Ray and the crew at the outside tables being serenaded by the landlord's son on the bazouki. I guess he will have them up hanky dancing before I can unbutton NYU's blouse.
--Barry Forshaw

 
Used availability for Stuart Browne's Dangerous Parking


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Paperback Editions

January 2008 : UK Paperback
Title: Dangerous Parking
Author(s): Stuart Browne
ISBN: 0-7475-9545-3 / 978-0-7475-9545-8 (UK edition)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   

February 2001 : UK Paperback
Title: Dangerous Parking
Author(s): Stuart Browne
ISBN: 0-7475-5202-9 / 978-0-7475-5202-4 (UK edition)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

February 2001 : UK Paperback
Title: Dangerous Parking (Bloomsbury paperbacks)
Author(s): Stuart Browne
ISBN: 0-7475-5334-3 / 978-0-7475-5334-2 (UK edition)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Availability: Amazon UK   

March 2000 : UK Paperback
Title: Dangerous Parking
Author(s): Stuart Browne
ISBN: 0-7475-4839-0 / 978-0-7475-4839-3 (UK edition)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   



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