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Summary

What if a demented London cabbie called Dave Rudman wrote a book to his estranged son to give him some fatherly advice? What if that book was buried in Hampstead, and hundreds of years later, when rising sea levels have put London underwater, spawned a religion? What if one man decided to question life according to Dave? And what if Dave had indeed made a mistake?

Shuttling between the recent past and a far-off future, in which England is terribly altered, The Book of Dave is a strange and troubling mirror held up to our times: disturbing, satirizing, and vilifying who and what we think we are.

©2006 Will Self (P)2010 WF Howes Ltd

What listeners say about The Book of Dave

Average customer ratings
Overall
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Clever and witty.

This book is a clever and witty. Beautifully and creatively written it is, for me, a vicious and hilarious attack on how people can take religious or pseudo-religious writings and bend the meaning to their own pursuit of power.



Self creates a world that is mad, but where the source of madness is explained in an inventive and amusing manner.



This is one of two Self books I've read. This one I loved; the other I hated.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Really unusual but gripping story

Would you listen to The Book of Dave again? Why?

Yes - as a lot of what happens in it is so clever, you need time to digest it!

Have you listened to any of Will Self’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No - but he is an excellent reader - possibly a little slow, but I found that playing it at a slightly faster speed - 1.25 - was perfect!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

An interesting premise

Whilst I did enjoy this book, it left me a little depressed. The situation in which this society finds itself (I can't say too much without giving away the plot) is so true of modern religious faction, yet so far from reality, that it leaves a bad taste. However, it is very funny throughout and is very well written. Will Self is certainly a master at thinking outside the box and getting to the nub of human existence. Depressing though that nub might be. I wouldn't recommend this book to everybody, but for many it will give both amusement and perhaps food for thought.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not for me

I really like Will Self, warts and all.
Incisive, witty, profound by turns.
But this just tries too hard, and never quite works for me. A tad laborious.
And of course, it's just taste in the end isn't it? - and taste is the enemy of art (obviously).

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Great story, superbly narrated.

Don't miss the opportunity to hear this story in it's native tongue. Spiteful, hopeless, beautiful and inevitable.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Intriguing

I enjoyed that, but it was a bit difficult at times, not something I shall be picking up again.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Such hard work..

Great idea, but my word - this book is painful to get through. I had to go over the first chapter twice, it didn’t make sense either time. The book consists of made up words, cockney slang, there’s no order to the story - I mean none at all. It really is hard work. Sadly it’s not not very enjoyable either. The hard work just isn’t worth it

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Where to Guv?

Would you listen to The Book of Dave again? Why?

Brilliantly narrated by Will Self with a certain supercilious verve the story by turns ludicrous, cruel, racist, sexist, istist, becomes a moving archaeology of London and revealed religion all shook by a thousand taxi rides across the metropolis past and its dystopian future.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A fantastic book...

Will Self reads and this is a real treat. The book is one that shaped my thought and reverberated threateningly over the months that followed...

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

This book challenges but it's worth it.

If you could sum up The Book of Dave in three words, what would they be?

Totally subversive - brilliant

What did you like best about this story?

dripping with satire. It was extremely good on mental health. I loved the sci fi aspect. Self is apparently a huge sci fi addict and it reminds me of bits of Ballard and Dick as well as Heller and Houellebecq. The characters were real and vivid. Loved the motos
I listened on audiobook so found bits a bit hard to follow until I got into "mockney" and "arpie"
Saying that it is very original. I just loved it.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Enjoy is not a word that goes easily with this book but loved all the bits with the motos

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

You couldn't make a film of this book so please don't anyone try!

Any additional comments?

This is an uncomfortable, challenging book which is truly tragic but has it's moments of redemption. Come to terms with it's message and you will be a much better and wiser person