The Yips by Nicola Barker
2006 is a foreign country; they do things differently there. Tiger Woods’ reputation is entirely untarnished and the English Defence League does not exist yet.
Storm clouds of a different kind are gathering above the bar of Luton’s less than exclusive Thistle Hotel. Among those caught up in the unfolding drama are a man who’s had cancer seven times, a woman priest with an unruly fringe, the troubled family of a notorious local fascist, an interfering barmaid with three E’s at A-level but a PhD in bullshit, a free-thinking Muslim sex therapist and his considerably more pious wife. But at the heart of every intrigue and the bottom of every mystery is the repugnantly charismatic Stuart Ransom – a golfer in free-fall.
Nicola Barker’s Man Booker longlisted novel, The Yips, is at once a historical novel of the pre-Twitter moment, the filthiest state-of-the-nation novel since Martin Amis’ Money and the most flamboyant piece of comic fiction ever to be set in Luton.