Swing Hammer Swing! by Jeff Torrington

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A riotous urban picaresque, richly laced with black humour, Jeff Torrington's comic novel marks a milestone in Scottish literature.

'This tale of a week in the life of Tam Clay, Gorbals slum-dweller, father-in-waiting and wordsmith manqué, is funny from beginning to end... As Tam stumbles through the drink-sodden world of the Gorbals underclass of the sixties, when a house in Castlemilk was an ambition, he embarks on a mini-odyssey of self-discovery while blinding the reader with literary legerdemain' - Ian Black, The Herald.

Winner of the Whitbread Book of the Year Award.


About Jeff Torrington

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Jeff Torrington (31 December 1935 - 11 May 2008) was a novelist from Glasgow in Scotland.His novels draw on the changing face of modern Scotland. Swing Hammer Swing (1992) was situated in the demolition of the old Gorbals and The Devil's Carousel (1998) drew on the decline of a fictionalized version of the Rootes/Chrysler car plant at Linwood.Swing Hammer Swing was Whitbread Book of the Year in 1992.
Published November 30, 2012 by Vintage Digital. 418 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Swing Hammer Swing!

Kirkus Reviews

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When Thomas attempts to kiss Rhona goodbye after a hospital visit, she raises her hand and rebukes him, saying, ``your breath would melt iron!'' When Rhona's genteel sister Phyllis introduces him to a family friend, Thomas reports that she ``flicked a tentacle to indicate to her visitor that I (a...

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Publishers Weekly

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This debut novel, set in late-1960s Scotland, depicts a week in the life of a writer faced with unending problems.

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The Independent

Seen at his various occupations - in pubs, visiting his wife, prematurely admitted to the maternity ward with high blood pressure, looking for a job, committing guilty adultery with Becky McQuade, and (naturally) thinking about his unfinished novel and the sinister gentlemen on his tail - he is a...

Feb 18 2013 | Read Full Review of Swing Hammer Swing!

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