First published in the UK by Hodder And Stoughton in September 1982. Audiobook edition narrated by Christian Rodska published by Audible Studios in May 2012.
One of my Essential General Election Reads 2017.
Where to buy this book:
Buy from independent booksellers via Alibris
Buy the audiobook download from Audible via Amazon.com / Amazon.co.uk
Buy the paperback from Speedyhen
Buy the paperback from The Book Depository
How I got this book:
Bought the audiobook from Audible
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Against the odds, former steel worker Harry Perkins has led the Labour Party to a stunning victory. His manifesto includes the removal of American bases, public control of finance, and the dismantling of media empires. The Establishment is appalled. Something must be done. As MI5 conspires with the City and the press barons to bring Perkins down, he finds himself caught up in a no-holds-barred battle for survival.
How would The Establishment react if an ultra-socialist Labour leader actually got voted into Number 10? Not a Tony Blair or even (in my opinion) a Jeremy Corbyn, but a 'proper' old-fashioned Socialist. That's the question posed by this novel and the drama unfolds satisfyingly throughout. There is (yes, unsurprisingly!) a lot of politics woven into the story, but I liked how this aspect and its philosophising was incorporated allowing the pace to continue to flow. I found myself nodding sagely at the characters' behaviour at several points. Their earnestness or back-stabbing selfishness and desperation to maintain the status quo at all costs is certainly wickedly humorous, but also seriously depressing when I considered how close to the wire this book frequently comes. Other than technological advances such as social media manipulation, the political machinations Mullin imagined thirty-five years ago are exactly as we see now, especially in the way a few media barons control the information available to the majority of the public. A Very British Coup is a Very British Book and I'd be interested to know if overseas readers/listeners would recognise their own politicians in the characters too.
Search Lit Flits for more:
Books by Chris Mullin / Humorous fiction / Books from England