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Deep Hanging Out - Richard Gwyn

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Genre: Fiction / Author: Richard Gwyn / Paperback / 342 Pages / Book is published 2007-03-01 by Snowbooks

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      07.05.2009 16:14
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      Definitely a rewarding read throughout, if only to learn about the social history of Crete.

      Deep Hanging Out is the second novel By Richard Gwyn. It was published in 2007 by Snow Books and recieved brilliant reviews by BBC Radio Two, The Times and The London Paper.

      It sounds like a cliche but this book is really hard to put down. It's set in 1981 on the Greek island of Crete. The two main characters are Cosmo Flute (an English artist) and his house mate and friend Ruben Fortuna (an Argentinian Photographer).

      They spend their time Deep Hanging Out, which basically means getting wasted and observing people and situations at a local Taverna dubbed The Unspeakable. It's at this taverna that you will find the really great character of Igbar Zoff (who was one of the peripheral characters of Gwyn's first novel The Colour Of A Dog Running Away). This was a really nice touch that rewards the reader for their loyalty to the author, and like a private joke amongst friends, it goes down really well.

      Without wanting to give too much away, things take a turn for the worst when the two friends witness secret US military activity on the Island. The story features some really elaborate cover-ups and conspiracy theories that do take their roots in real world politics and history of the Island. It's clear that Gwyn has done his research, throwing in localised sayings and giving away traditions and idiosyncracies indiginous to this area. As a Greek, I did find his use of actual Greek somewhat tokenistic but I think this will be missed and more easily accepted by non-Greeks.

      The book in general has some really nice theories and philosophies littered throughout the story. It is really worth reading and is comparable in elements to Milan Kundera and Paolo Coelho.

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