Two boys. John and Kenny. One streetwise and football mad, the other cold and unfathomable.
It's 1975. The heart of London's East End. As John celebrates the Hammers beating Fulham in the Cup Final, Kenny tumbles out the door of the new people's house across the street having taken a beating of a different kind.
When the new school year begins, John befriends Kenny, defending him from the ridicule of his classmates. But when you become mates with someone as odd, as downright terrifying as Kenny, nothing is ever straightforward. Amidst the turbulent years of late seventies London, the lives of John and Kenny spiral out of control. They meet again, years later, and local villain, Ronnie Swordfish, is after Kenny's head. All John can do is watch. Kenny, he ain't saying a word. He never does.
So when Ronnie gives the order to fetch his three foot Samurai sword, John thinks the game's all but up. Thing is, he don't know the half of it...
Abide With Me is a story of football, friendship, and hope. And gangsters.
A story of how two boys walked blind into the darkness... and emerged as men.
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A good listen to a British book set in East London
East London, kids, gangsters
I believe this is one of Karl's first, and is a very solid performance.
Without giving the game away - what happens to Kenny at the end of a difficult life, is very moving.
The first part of the book takes you through the life of a young boy, and it took me a little while to adjust to hearing an older man's voice. However, as the story unfolded, and the coarse language which punctuates the book continued, I think this made a lot of sense, and added to the retrospective feel of the book. Karl's voice was comfortable to listen to, with a wonderful gravelly tone to it.
The story was moving and I was sucked in to discovering more about these two boys lives, always hoping for a better future for them. I was drawn in to an East London of the 60's and 70's.
Nothing I say will probably do this book justice
- AudioBook Reviewer