Jonathan Coe’s Expo 58 | Jonathan Agnew | Shereen El Feki’s Sex in the CitadelJonathan Coe gave a sneak preview of his new novel, Expo 58, published next month. It is set amid the “last days of British embarrassedness and uptightness” against the background of the 1958 Brussels world fair – a barely constructed set-up whose traces (its national pavilions and housing for workers) are long gone. Britain’s main contribution to the fair was a working pub called the Britannia that was afterwards shipped to Dover, became a lapdancing club, and is now closed. (Cynics might see a certain metaphorical resonance there.) There’s a different tone, he said, from his satire of the Thatcher years, What a Carve Up! “It’s not really a satire but a comedy,” he said of Expo 58. “I love the classic light comedy films of the 1930s and 40s and wanted to do something delicate like that, something that floats, rather than hammering things home as I did in What a Carve Up!”Cricket commentator Jonathan Agnew has been in townthough it was his delightful black spaniel, Tino, who stole people’s hearts). Cricket fans may have been gripped by the Ashes, but poor old Aggers has …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books