Hope and Other Urban Tales - Laura Hird

In the best tradition of challenging fiction, written by an Edinburgh local, this is a book to own.

Book Review by Xavier Toby | 10 Feb 2007
Gritty fiction with a liberal dose of contemporary disillusionment, this collection of short stories is amazingly good. The characters and their emotions, dilemmas and situations are palpably real, as is the honesty with which they're realized. It's terrifyingly depressing that this book has got nowhere near the press or accolades it deserves while some four-eyed geek with a wand is still selling books, women clamour to read about the most recent incarnation of a fat 30 year-old who can't get laid and virtually everyone in the world has read a second rate thriller featuring the name of a famous artist. The dialogue in Hope and Other Urban Tales stands out for its brilliance, but all the other aspects of the writing are superb. The situations are consistently compelling and believable, dragging you in to the lives of these characters who, while often easy to loathe, still arouse compassion and interest. This book is in the best tradition of challenging fiction, and written by an Edinburgh local, it's one to own. There are some graphic sections so the easily offended should watch out. Actually fuck it; read this anyway and stop being so touchy. (Xavier Toby)
Published by Cannongate Books