Thursday, 12 August 2010

Once bitten, twice shy

A customer - indeed a regular by all accounts - appeared from the back of the bookshop and accosted the sales assistant.

You appear to be out of toilet roll.

Ah ha! Have you tried looking under “historical fantasy”?

I beg your pardon?!

The assistant hopped onto the nearby ladder, shimmed his way up to the top, levered a particularly fat tomb from the highest shelf; then, sliding back down again, placed the book squarely in the customer's hands.

I see now how you could of missed it.

No, no, how very droll, this is “Twilight Roll”; I said, “toilet roll”.

Let me unpack how this relatively unamusing, and largely inconsequential, misunderstanding occurred. The book in question, “Twilight Roll”, was a sort of prequel-prequel - commissioned by the estate of the never nether-popular author of the teen vampire series, “Twilight” - set in the insanitary conditions of medieval Europe at the onset of a dysentery epidemic that threatens to dwindle a town of town dwellers to naught, which - by an unhealthy mixture of coincidence and parasitic symbiosis - also threatens to diminish the local vampires' food stock to naught, whereupon one, long-in-the-tooth, vampire elder and his youthful assistant (who has fallen in love with a a local lass with terminal ass trouble) invents toilet roll; thus saving the day and on the very eve of mass extinction, AKA,“The Dark Ages”.

Advanced praise:

“Remains with the reader long after loved ones and those nearest and dearest have passed away.”

“Not just your bog-standard prequel-prequel.”

“Completely wipes away the recycled cliché that otherwise passes for niche historical, teen vampire, fantasy fiction.”

“Bound to be flush with success – let's hope this is the beginning, and not end, of a roll!

Shut the door, switch the latch, sit down, relax and then prepare to be bowled over.

Not only lifts the lid, but is also not just content to sit on the rim.

Surprisingly lengthy, but I couldn't stop once I started!

More cunning than the Chinese game of Go.

Too tightly plotted for prolapsed prose.

An underground classic that wont be buried.

Squeezes every last drop of emotion.

Will rival Roth's Human Stain.”

Finally, aGone With The Wind for vampire lovers.

More poetic than Browning.

Will drive you round the bend.

Made all the right links.

Not afraid to break the surface.

“A gut wrenching rites-of-passage story.

It will leave its mark.

I felt it go right though me.

“Bound to create a splash.

An immense release.

Set to make waves.

Full of moral fibre.

Drove me potty!

One to log.

Wipe out!

Totally moving.

Slam dunk!

I didn't want it to finish.

Keep them coming!

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