It’s autumn 2008, and Matt Freeman is having a very bad day. Stuck in Canary Wharf, he’s overwhelmed by shoddy merchandise, hollow corporations, and broken promises. Later that night, things only get worse when he drops in on his girlfriend, Bobbie, a fashion PR and reality TV show fanatic.
As his London life spirals murderously out of control, Matt is forced to seek out old flames and consider North Korean business ventures. Sneered at by sales assistants, abused by cabbies, and mugged by his own dreams, he searches for a final means of escape. Get Me Out of Here is a novel of comic anger, of success and failure, commerce and culture – and, fundamentally, belief – in a busted city.
What did you like most about Get Me Out of Here?
I couldn't quite believe what I was hearing at first. The book is more than a little different! It is shockingly bizarre and, at times, absolutely hilarious.The story is told in the first person by Matt Freeman, a failing entrepreneur who seems to be suffering all kinds of personality disorder syndromes not actually diagnosed yet. He moans incessantly, is brand obsessive, a compulsive womaniser, Police worrier and ... well you will have to read or hear the book to find out more. Suffice to say he uses and abuses all around him -- from hapless shop assistants, to girlfriends old and new to his rich mate in advertising, who he stitches up brilliantly.Although I have yet to meet anyone quite like Matt Freeman, I recognise elements of him, as I do in the other wonderfully drawn characters Sutton populates his book with. Some of the best encounters are between Matt and law enforcers, who he runs rings around, until, eventually, they leave him be, largely through exasperation.Through black humour and satire the book reveals a lot about society today; its consumerism, obsessions and neuroses. The only book I've read which tackles similar themes, with a wacky unreliable narrator, is Money by Martin Amis. Another book I love. Ben Elton has also produced some blinding satire for our times, Blind Faith, in particular. But Matt Freeman, in his designer clothes and David Clulow specs, make an unforgettable impression.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Matt Freeman, because he dominates the story in such a unique way.
Which character – as performed by Matt Bates – was your favourite?
Let me just say that Matt Bates read brilliantly. He really brought the characters alive for me -- male and female. I've just said I like Matt Freeman the best but, I have to say, Matt Bates' reading of Suze was hilarious! I also liked the way he captured the scepticism and eventual exasperation of the coppers, that Matt came across.
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Yes, But I listened to it in three sittings.
Any additional comments?
Henry Sutton produced an original, well-written and funny satire, with a unique and unforgettable unreliable narrator. Matt Bates did the book justice with his brilliant voices and performance.