I’m delighted to welcome you today to my stop on the blog tour for Andy Hamilton’s quirky and insightful new novel Longhand. Thank you to Anne Cater and Unbound Books for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book.
About the book:
• The new novel from comedy legend Andy Hamilton, whose writing credits include Outnumbered and Drop the Dead Donkey
• Longhand reimagines the life of immortal Greek hero Heracles, who is currently residing in contemporary Scotland with his girlfriend Bess
• Written entirely in Andy’s own longhand, complete with crossings out and edits
‘From beginning to end, a joy to read. A tale of mingled tragedy and comedy,
disaster and triumph … A handwritten love letter to a woman we never meet,
that’s also a love letter to humanity’ NEIL GAIMAN
Malcolm George Galbraith is a large, somewhat clumsy, Scotsman. He’s being forced to leave the woman he loves behind and needs to explain why.
So he leaves her a handwritten note on the kitchen table (well, more a 300-page letter than a note). In it, Malcolm decides to start from the beginning and tell the whole story of his long life, something he’s never dared do before.
Because Malcolm isn’t what he seems: he’s had other names and lived in other places. A lot of other places. As it gathers pace, Malcolm’s story combines tragedy, comedy, mystery, a touch of leprosy, several murders, a massacre, a ritual sacrifice, an insane tyrant, two great romances, a landslide, a fire, and a talking fish.
About the author:
Andy Hamilton is a comedy writer, performer and director. He regularly appears on the BBC TV panel shows Have I Got News for You and on Radio 4’s News Quiz and I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue.
His television writing credits include Outnumbered, Drop the Dead Donkey, Not the Nine O’Clock News, Trevor’s World of Sport, Ballot Monkeys, Power Monkeys and many others. He also co- created the movie What We Did On Our Holiday.
For twenty years he has played Satan in the Radio 4 comedy Old Harry’s Game, which he also writes.
Longhand is the quirky but memorable new novel by comedy legend Andy Hamilton. I have to admit it did take me a while to get into this book as I found the handwritten style of the novel a little bit hard on the eyes at first, but I soon found myself completely captivated by the story, drawn into the world of Malcolm and the many lives he’s lived.
After twenty years of happy marriage to Bess, Malcolm knows from experience that all good things must come to an end. And so, before he leaves, he decides to write a love letter to her, starting from the very beginning of his long and eventful life.
I don’t want to say too much about the story itself, as I do feel that the less you know going in the richer the experience will be. And this is a book you definitely need to experience! Written entirely in Andy’s own longhand, complete with crossings out and edits, Longhand is filled to the brim with his trademark style of humour. It is without a doubt laugh out loud funny, but it is also an incredibly moving and insightful read that really does make you think.
I may have struggled with Longhand to begin with, but I can honestly say it has turned out to be one of my favourite reads of 2020. Different in style to anything I’ve ever read before, it is an hilarious but poignant story that shows both the best and the worst of what humanity has to offer.
A moving tale of love, loss and everything in between, Longhand is a unique and rather wonderful book that I would highly recommend.
Longhand by Andy Hamilton is available to purchase now: Amazon UK
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