Either "First Novel" is a darkly funny examination of the relative attractions of creative writing courses and suburban dogging sites, or it's a twisted campus novel and possible murder mystery that's not afraid to blend fact with fiction in its exploration of the nature of identity. Paul Kinder, a novelist with one forgotten book to his name, teaches creative writing in a university in the north-west of England. Either he's researching his second, breakthrough novel, or he's killing time having sex in cars. Either eternal life exists, or it doesn't. Either you'll laugh, or you'll cry. Either you'll get it, or you won't.
'First Novel is absolutely at the forefront of everything I've read in British fiction over the last couple of years.' Jonathan Coe
I began by simply enjoying the novel and ended up being thrilled, horrified, disturbed. First Novel is absolutely at the forefront of everything I've read in British fiction over the last couple of years. -- Jonathan Coe
Nicholas Royle is the author of six previous novels, including The Director's Cut and Antwerp, as well as two novellas and a short story collection, Mortality. Born in Manchester in 1963, he runs Nightjar Press, reviews fiction for the Independent, and is a senior lecturer in creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University. He divides his time between Manchester and London.