Days of Throbbing Gristle by Kevin Cole – Review


Title – Days of Throbbing Gristle
Author – Kevin Cole
Genre – Fiction
Length – 821 Pages (Kindle)
Publication – 16th April 2014
My Rating – 5/5 Stars


It’s 1987. Sam Henry Hay, a 17-year-old exchange student from Sheffield, hops into Texas, USA, with one burning ambition: Manipulate his gullible host parents into funding his university, and leave his dead-end life in Yorkshire behind.

But is Sam manipulating America or America manipulating Sam? The clever lad schmoozes his way into many a bed and purse, yet can’t get rid of anyone. He executes careful plans, only to watch them disastrously fall apart. Worst of all, this once proud nihilist watches in horror as he reveals a conscience, in a world growing ever darker around him.

Days of Throbbing Gristle is not your typical teenage tale. It’s a razor-slashing journey through a time and place that really was as bad as you’ve heard. For some, high school is the best time in their lives. For others, it’s a miracle they make it to the other side.


Full disclosure I was given a copy of this book by the author in exchange for a honest review.

First of let me tell you this book a quite long. Over 800 pages which is the longest book I’ve read but It is well worth reading.

The book follows Sam as he moved to the US to begin a new life away from Sheffield and is a coming of age tale with quite a lot of subjects thrown in. This is one of the main reasons I loved the book. How can you get bored with so many topics being examined by the author. Kevin Cole tackles drugs, sex, religion to name but a few. Personally i feel this gave great depth to the book as it made it feel real

Along Sam’s adventure we meet a number of characters and you see how he outwardly deals with them while also knowing his inside thoughts and feelings. As the novel is quite long this gave Kevin a great chance to deliver with the character development and boy did he. You see relationships grow and change and if anything i was kept guessing at what next would happen.

I’ll admit from the synopsis i really didn’t know what to expect from this book and when i noticed it was over 800 pages i was a little daunted at the prospect of reading it but Kevin managed to hook me quickly and kept me reading. Most books i might put down after an hour or so but i found myself reading for longer without noticing the time passing.

For fear of spoilers i don’t want to give too much away but i wasn’t let down by how the book finished but nor did i expect the ending we were given. Such is Kevin’s style of writing that he left me with no clue what was going to happen from chapter to chapter and this made it the brilliant read it was

So i think I’ve given the book enough praise.. now to nit pick. Being such a long novel inevitably you are going to find some inconsistencies. There were a couple typos and places where i thought names might have been mixed up but really nothing that affected my reading

That’s it really.. what more can i say..Sam is a brilliant character, you’ll love and hate him at the same time. If you are a fan of reading longer novels then i would definitely recommend this. The same goes for anyone who is either stuck with deciding what to read next or like me wanted to try something outside of their usual genre.

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