Friday, March 16, 2007

The Hat Check Boy launch

Waterstones last night for the Commonword launch of Mike Duff's second novel, The Hat Check Boy, and a very jolly night it was too. Mike's first novel, the pacy vernacular tale of a contemporary yet Dickensian 'hero' making his roguish way through Manchester, sold out and was greeted with acclaim by newspapers and academics alike. Last night a huge crowd from Mike's home town of Moston gathered to hear an extract from his equally lively second book, and the questions (mostly rhetorical) and tongue-in-cheek comments began almost before he had finished reading:

Man in audience: When are you publishing a third book?
Mike: When are you finishing my bathroom?
Man on front row rather worse for drink: Mike, do you still love me?
Mike: Yes, but not in that way.
(Mike, tipsy man and audience fall about laughing)

Those of us who had undertaken to take the photos were just crap: the camera of ex-Commonword publisher Cathy Bolton ran out of battery, and the flash on mine stopped working, and all it produced was this blurred drunken image:

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