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Long before some seemingly petty uibbles rear their heads and two rival unions are formed I m sure it won t please everyone but I found it compelling and smiled wryly n many ccasions I LOVED this book really funny particularly from my "Perspective As An Employer And As Always " as an employer And as always can be counted n to be Kakoong, Pahlawan Pulau Awan Vol. 8 off the wall Over the past three weeks in between some larger novels I ve read three Magnus Mills novels The Scheme for Full Employment The Fieldf the Cloth f Gold and The Forensic Records Society While I ve read several ther Mills novels Explorers f the New Century remains my favorite largely because he employs the deadpan humor and irony in a pointedly specific fashion the targets are clear and the successful bulls eyes measurable and it becomes a first rate satire about English zeal hypocrisy racism guilt and the petty competitionsirritations that undermine groups The Scheme for Full Employment presents an alternate reality very like ur wn where we slowly come to understand what scheme it is that the English have lost which is being used elsewhere in the world For several decades there has been a fleet f vans going about specific routes making deliveries and collections and the sole purpose f these gyrations is to move parts around for the maintenance f the vans and the van depots in the process affording "the workers gainful *8 hour per day employment Mills narrator asserts that ther countries continue to successfully "workers gainful *8 hour per day employment Mills narrator asserts that ther countries continue to successfully this scheme while the English have *hour per day employment Mills narrator asserts that ther countries continue to successfully employ this scheme while the English have things for a variety f reasons but mainly because a strike meant to resolve the workers A Stepdaughter In Heat (Daddy Daughter Sex Stories) own dissension aboutccasional short ie not full days brings to the attention f thers the scheme s inertial non productivity The narrator ff handedly touches n several In the End other worms in the apple which suggest thatther inherent vices might have eventually produced the same result ie brought everything to a haltThe novel seems to have a satiric target but it s so general and vague that ne is not sure what real world scheme properly approximates the ne in the novel In some respect we sense Mills is suggesting that all f ur activity is something f the sort unproductive routines whose nly purpose is to ensure we continue to do the same tomorrow There is much else in the novel that makes finding specific real world correlatives irrelevant the narrator s diffident manner is a common theme in all f his novels and it allows Mills to present events and transactions with thers in a stoic get n with it manner even when things appear to be going pear shaped The entire subplot about the narrator s mate s sideline f selling cakes that his girlfriend bakes is The Age of Treachery one examplef how the narrator handles so matter f factly the large and small alterations in his let s get n with it uotidian routineSimilarly the narratives in The Field The Catcher in the Rye and Philosophy of Clothf Gold and The Forensic Records Society employ the same polite diffident narrative persona In the Field Seven Sisters New Quilts from an Old Favorite of Cloth we are in some unspecified pre Industrial Age settingn a large. Elines the workforce is divided into two camps Flat Dayers and Early Swervers'An enjoyable novel by a truly Bike Mechanic: Tales from the Road and the Workshop (Rouleur) original writer' Sunday Times'A British writer to be treasured' Independent'Mills'dd but wonderful books combine the language f a children's story and the strange dry humour f Harold Pinter' Daily ExpressMagn. I remember reading The Restraint When a Man Loves a Woman of Beasts when it first cameut loving it and looking for by Magnus Mills but not not finding anything and then forgetting about him completely Shame n me I was missing ut Keep From Falling on The Scheme for Full Employment which I cannly describe as mildly rib tickling it s hugely funny but never in a way that actually makes you laugh Catalogue the Insanity out loud The complexitiesf The Scheme a make work project in which Univan drivers carry loads f Univan parts to Univan depots in a never ending round f pointless fuel consumption are described in perfectly paced detail and without any irony Shrek on the partf the happily employed narrator It s a bubble that has to burst eventually and when a minor industrial dispute escalates to a full scale strike it s the fact that the lack f Univan activity has zero impact n the national economy that finally unmasks the futility Look Alikes Jr. of the whole enterprise A brilliant but gently tongue in cheek critiuef command economies And now that I ve rediscovered him I ve the rest f Mr Mill s works to look forward to I so love Magnus Mills The deceptively simple style I suspect it is *actually uite difficult to write like that is just such a joy to read the space in the *uite difficult to write like that is just such a joy to read the space in the and the unadorned tone make it a relief a uiet asis amidst the hurly burly Architecture for the Shroud: Relic and Ritual in Turin of so muchf my Collecting and Exhibiting Computer-Based Technology: Expert Curation at the Museums of the Smithsonian Institution other reading matterI can t spoil the plot by mentioning it because as usual there isn t muchf He Remembers the Barren one which is partf the point I could go The Early Girl Gets the Blood Wolf on at great length about all the many things I seegetut Diary of a Library Nerd: An Erotic Diary of One Woman's Metamorphosis of his writing but the people who don t get Magnus Mills would just take it as a casef Emperor s New Clothes and the people who do get him would just nod and dip their biscuit into their tea uite uite amazing and horrific a humorous book explaining how to keep lots The Stonemere Park Breast Essays: From The L.C.T.F. Archives of people employed doing nothing but move stuff from place to place that has no use at all Around the time I read this book I was working as a truck driver Well I wasn t uite working as my job simply entailed a few uick deliveriesn any given day This left me with nothing
do but sleep in my truck nce my deliveries were done I probably worked two hours ut f an eight work day everydayDuring this period I also visited an Blue Guide New York old high school friend and told him what I was doing for work A week later he mailed me a copyf Magnus Mills The Scheme for Full Employment He said This book is about a truck driver who drives around all day doing nothing I think you ll like it He was right I have read many f Magnus Mills s books and very much enjoyed this as with all f the Homesick others I suspect though it will divide those who read it having stumbled upon him It is in the veinf The Maintenance Of Headway than The Restraint Of Beasts Beasts is much darker with that black humour that Mills is renowned for Headway is much drier humour and about centred around a working class workplace Similarly here and almost it seems like an allegory for the 1970s strikes Though the van drivers working for the Scheme have few grievances at first it isn The Scheme was designed to provide an honest wage for an honest day's labour Men driving identical rust resistant Univans deliver Univan parts to strategically spaced warehouses Simple self perpetuating and efficient it seems destined to last forever But when some drivers begin leaving early and developing delivery sid. Grass plain defined by the wending A Criminal Affair of a river and the narrator *tellsf coming upon the plain setting camp and then f the *of coming upon the plain setting camp and then f the arrival f thers to the plain and how alliances rivalries schisms and even purging persecutions ensue It has the appearance f fable but there are shaggy dog aspects such as the fate f the copper bathtub that detract from the generality f fable but lend the story a narrative primitivism and na vete It bathtub that detract from the generality f fable but lend the story a narrative primitivism and na vete It all an inch by inch incremental growth f tension and dissension seemingly harmless even comical and then finally the all too real and disturbing awareness that he the narrator has somehow got himself complicit in the violence that will ensue The aura f fable suggests real world correlatives to events in the novel but there ends up being nly a general target human nature which bull s eye is the entire target In The Forensic Records Society Mills target could be specialist groups like any group f detectorists stamp collectors fantasy sport enthusiasts et al Confessions of a Teenage Hollywood Star or it may be suggesting something about larger institutions like religions and the schisms thatccur within them The particulars however are what make the story and the narrator again ignorantly and naively narrates his tale never fully apprehending what is going Precious Stones: Their Occult Power and Hidden Significance on around him nor ever drawing any sortf conclusion about what s transpired As with The Field The Proletarian Revolution and the Renegade Kautsky of Clothf Gold there is a woman who takes a dislike to the narrator and there are ramifications to her presence and activities that produce disuiet and dissension at a sub rosa level What begins as the veneration f listening
to do but sleep in my truck Let the Wolf Howl once my deliveries were done I probably worked two hoursut f an eight
TO RECORDS ENDS FOR ONE PRINCIPALrecords ends for ne principal as the fetishizing Works Days of a single record which he will never play There are multiple threads in the story but the largest deals with then going splintering f the principal group into near replicas f itself The novel ends with events that transpire and cannot be commented n r judged much in the manner Heart of the Wood of the eponymous records society s founding principlesThere s a coziness to the voice Mills employs in telling his tales which uietly and decorously broach large and sometimes disturbing themes via banal conversation and humdrum activity Allf Mills narrative personae unremarkably skew things so that the The King's Commissar ordinary somehow morph into the surreal Let s call it Kafka for the English navvy Please note I read this some years back so don t remember it clearlySynopsis The whole idea is simple yet so perfect men drive to and from strategically placed war The book returns to Mills s signature theme the worldf working class employment in this case it also feels like an allegory for the 1970s the world Bloodmage of unions and arcane employment disputes and procedures as well as the risef Thatcherism the narrator and thers are shocked by the appearance f a female inspector who dares to uestion the very foundations Thinking Through Food: A Philosophical Introduction of the scheme and atne point associates it with failed social experiments like free school milk This is possibly Making Instruments Count: Essays on Historical Scientific Instruments Presented to Gerard L'Estrange Turner onef the most frustrating books I ve ever read And I loved Us Mills is the author Every Sigh, the End of the story collection Screwtop Thompson and six novels including The Restraintf Beasts which won the McKitterick Prize and was shortlisted for both the Booker Prize and the Whitbread now the Costa First Novel Award in 1999 His books have been translated into twenty languages He lives in Londo.