A Great Big Shining Star

A Great Big Shining Star

3.62 (40 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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Description

Sixteen-year-old Grace may be from a small coastal village but she's not staying there. She has huge dreams, and knows from television and magazines that she can get to the big city, she can be a star, simply by changing from a duckling to a swan. It doesn't take much: a little silicone and surgery here and there - enhancement and augmentation - nose, breasts, lips, hair, teeth, nails. Then with the right clothes and a new tan she'll be ready: ready to be seen, consumed and adored by millions on YouTube, television and lifestyle magazines. Grace will become a celebrity. Someone, though, remembers her as an ordinary, pretty schoolgirl living in a rural paradise: a place of simple, natural beauty. As school caretaker he once bandaged her knee when she fell, and now, when he sees how utterly Grace has changed, he sees clearly how far the world has fallen since those days - taking him with it. The collision of their two lives, their two very different trajectories, can only end in catastrophe.
Written with a raging, lyrical fury, this is a devastating satire on a society fixated on image and celebrity - how innocence and individuality are routinely sacrificed for the totems of sex and wealth and glamour: a magnificent howl of anger and despair at a culture disintegrating into a brittle cult of fame.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 336 pages
  • 141 x 223 x 30mm | 432g
  • Jonathan Cape Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0224080695
  • 9780224080699
  • 942,982

Review Text

With his heightened style, strong grasp of north-west English and Welsh vernaculars and delight in nature’s distractions, Griffiths is always a brutal and barbarous pleasure to read. Few authors capture youthful vacuity and obsession better… creatively it’s a call to arms.
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Review quote

"Griffiths's language is lyrical, brutal and startling; it requires and deserves a robust reader." -- Jenn Ashworth Guardian "An eloquent and sustained howl of outrage and despair, boiling with lyrical fury, aimed at a culture which is so fixated on celebrity that is it prepared to sacrifice innocence and individuality and all moral scruples at the altar of wealth, fame and glamour." -- Brian McCabe Herald "Pulverising satire on the pursuit of celebrity... There is certainly no denying the visceral eloquence with which Griffiths shows us the skull beneath the spray-tanned skin." -- Trevor Lewis Sunday Times "Griffiths' incantatory style has always been his strongest card, and it is put to good use." -- Jonathan Gibbs Independent "With his heightened style, strong grasp of north-west English and Welsh vernaculars and delight in nature's distractions, Griffiths is always a brutal and barbarous pleasure to read. Few authors capture youthful vacuity and obsession better...creatively it's a call to arms." -- Paul Dale The List
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About Niall Griffiths

Niall Griffiths was born in Liverpool in 1966 and now lives in Wales. He has published six previous novels: Grits, Sheepshagger, Kelly + Victor, Stump, Wreckage, and Runt. The film of Kelly + Victor will be released shortly.
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Rating details

40 ratings
3.62 out of 5 stars
5 22% (9)
4 30% (12)
3 38% (15)
2 8% (3)
1 2% (1)
Book ratings by Goodreads
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