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Nice guys finish firstFriday Night Clubby Harry Ritchie328pp Hodder Here we have one of a tentative new breed of novel introducing a tentative new breed of male 36 years old and already psyching himself up to leave his teenage years behind shedding the chrysalis of Ageing Boy to flutter the modest pastel wings of Sensitive Man Here also is one of that less-than-tentative new breed of male author who hope to cash in handsomely by offering women a gratifying I-thought-as-much archeological dig into the muddy layers of mens egos The author compares favourably to Nick HornbyAnd so to our entertaining tale three not-so-young not-so-successful Scottish lads are looking forward to their regular night out with the love of their lives an ber-lad named Rob flash city job flash bachelor pad a calendar of nubile blondes made flesh But Rob has done a runner - and despite the fact theyve known him for 20 years it now takes mere days to figure out there was no ber-lad only a big fat blob of bullshitThe women-pleasing moral of the story is that the good life as portrayed by Rob sex drugs dosh no wedding rings is just a delinquent male fantasy and the only thing for men to do is to settle down with some nice sensible woman The sop to the male reader is that the boy in the book who lands said sensible woman is a balding ginger runt which proves you dont have to be an oil-painting providing youre a reliable sort of a chap who agrees with everything your girlfriend says The authors other sop to the male is that all the sensible girls in the book have nice hair and lovely tits as if theyd trotted straight out of a novel by Kingsley AmisWill the genre last Possibly Its a bit of a con with all the humble kowtowing to female superiority but it panders nicely to womens age-old contempt for men
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