FREE UK Delivery on book orders dispatched by site over £ Layer Cake Paperback – 12 Aug 'X' sees his opportunity to make a final score when crime boss, Jimmy Price, asks him to find the wayward daughter of rival crime boss, Eddy Ryder. Layer Cake is the debut novel of British author J. J. Connolly, first published in by Duckworth Press. It was made into a motion picture in (also called . Layer Cake book. Read 93 reviews from the world's largest community for readers. Our narrator's too smart to tell you his name (“if I [did], you'd be as.
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Our narrator's too smart to tell you his name (“if I [did], you'd be as clever as me”), but he's not afraid to tell you everything else about the “layer cake”—London's. Our narrator's too smart to tell you his name ("if I [did], you'd be as clever as me"), but he's not afraid to tell you everything else about the "layer cake"-London's. DJ Taylor enjoys JJ Connolly's linguistically lively crime caper Layer Cake.
More filters. Sort order. Jun 07, John Pye rated it it was amazing. This is a really great book. The author gets right into the mind of the drug dealing central character. His knowledge of the drugs world is quite astonishing and I say this as a former drugs squad detective.
I found it quite odd especially taking into account my background that the main character he who remains nameless is actually the hero of the story and becomes a character who you find yourself wanting to succeed.
It is a fantastic roller coaster ride with stunningly good and completely c This is a really great book. It is a fantastic roller coaster ride with stunningly good and completely convincing players all the way throughout. I watched the film and was very disappointed. A really cracking book and a must read.
Jan 11, Margaret rated it it was ok. The author did a much better job adapting it into a movie. Rich in baffling lingo and jargon this is a tricky book to get into, taking a certain amount of dedicated patience on the part of the reader but gradually the style and language does begin to flow and make some sort of sense, revealing a complex and violent tale with a fascinating knowledge of the criminal underworld.
But is there truly honour among thieves? Do they really have a moral code? Jan 26, Corielle Hayley rated it liked it Shelves: Several weeks have gone by, and I'm still not sure if I liked this book. I think I did. It certainly kept me guessing, and I definitely did not expect the end.
It just took a while to get into. But once I did, I think I liked it. Our unnamed protagonist deals coke. He's about to turn 30, he's got quite the little nest egg and he's ready to retire. He doesn't want to be some old gangster. But he gets roped in one more job for his boss and his boss's boss , and of course, it all goes south on hi Several weeks have gone by, and I'm still not sure if I liked this book.
But he gets roped in one more job for his boss and his boss's boss , and of course, it all goes south on him.
The biggest point for and against Layer Cake is the language. And I don't mean cussing. That I can handle. Connolly has written this entire thing from the first-person perspective of our protagonist, and between his own internal musings and the dialogue between the rest of the characters, this book is so chock full of slang that it made me dizzy.
There's several layers to the slang, too: British terms that I'm unfamiliar with, a random smattering of foreign language and worst of all, piles of gangster slang for drugs and violence and woman that made my head spin. BUT this constant barrage also serves a purpose: This is not a book to be read in short pieces which I did for the first few chapters and may explain my ambivalence.
It needs to be devoured in a few sittings so the rhythm of Connolly's language and actions properly translates.
Jul 22, Phil Altimas rated it it was amazing. Layer cake is amazing , really gets you involved and its high paced. It's a book that makes you want to turn over the page but at the same time you don't want it to end.
The character's stand out and make you visualise who you would expect to play them on the big screen. They are all also so believable, you can see these guys on the streets of any city. Unfortunately I watched the film after i read the book and it ruined the whole thing.
The characters you visualise in the book are not what you Layer cake is amazing , really gets you involved and its high paced. The characters you visualise in the book are not what you see in the movie, the power base had shifted , in the book no one mess's with Mr. Mortimer but in the film he is not a s feared as he should be , he is also not played by an east ender , and he is an east end, you know that from the book , he is big and black and the room shakes when he enters, you get that from the book.
The narrator , drug dealer is in my mind's eye more Danny Dyer than he is Daniel craig. Over all the book is amazing, a real treasure and one i would re-read.
Viva La Madness
Just don't watch the film after! Mar 08, Erik rated it it was amazing Shelves: A sprawling exploration of London's underworld in the mid-Nineties written in a stream-of-consciousness chockablock with impenetrable Cockney rhyming slang.
Not the most accessible novel for American readers, but definitely one of the most realistic crime novels set from the point of view of a drug dealer ever written. Jun 17, Realini rated it really liked it Shelves: Layer Cake, written by J. Connolly based on his novel A different version of this note and thoughts on other books are available at: Its Metascore is: And it is not bad.
But this no Goodfellas either. Some of the lines in the dialogue are clever, others are humorous, but a good number could be taken as somewhat silly: You get out in the world, you take more shit. You climb a little higher, you take less shit. He has yet more wisdom or humor to share and the personage benefits from the immense talent of Michael Gambon. His name in the movie? Even if —or because?
Granted, he is surrounded by much more despicable characters, like the aforementioned author of the Layer Cake wise crack, or is it a philosophy? There is a Serb monster, portrayed by an actor from here- Marcel Iures- but even if I understand the angle, I think he exaggerates.
XXXX is not a flowery figure either, he says from the start with coolness: And my commodity happens to be cocaine. Maybe it is an issue of what kind of a spectator you are, a fault finder or a merit finder- the latter is the better choice, in positive psychology terms. Another line like: Make the business legal and have it controlled and supervised, eliminating Mexican, Columbian, American and other cartels and gangs, the many deaths that are associated with the illegal trade and treat those addicted.
I would say the film is seven out of ten in my book Mar 18, Stacey rated it it was amazing. This one hit the money. No porkies, this is a real page turner that will keep you guessing. I loved how all the characters were tied together, as much as I loved the surprise ending.
This is the kind of book you need to go back and reread passages because so much is interrelated. Worth the effort. I read it in ten days, although I read most of it in huge chunks, especially after the halfway part - you kind of have to or you lose the flow of the story.
You can pick up almost everything from context. That was another big draw for me because I want to learn more of the lingo. I will eventually see the movie but I want to let it percolate a bit before actors go and sway me.
Sep 29, Nik W rated it it was amazing.
Apr 14, Nate rated it really liked it. It's easy to see why this book was turned into a movie. The quick, witty dialogue keeps you on your toes and the protagonist's struggles both internal and external keep the pages turning.
Follow the author
Aug 23, Lydia Tannasee rated it liked it. Was hard to get into and some bits were confusing but I liked the story line and the unexpected twists throughout.
Good stuff This is a heck of a crime novel. It felt very much like the movie, Snatch, with the rapid fire dialog, frenetic action, and loads of Britishisms. I enjoyed It immensely. Mar 11, James Riser rated it it was amazing. Layer Cake has strong settings and clear characterization.
There is a pretty large cast of characters, but Connolly manages to make them all unique and memorable. Just as the tense plot takes a lot of turns, the ending is just as unexpected. The colloquial language the book is written in creates a stronger bond between the reader and the narrator. On the way, Trevor explains that Van Tuck was a smuggler and he was currently moving several million pounds worth of marijuana into the country for Trevor. Trevor's hope is that Van Tuck had not yet picked up the shipment, but there is a strong possibility that the police will have confiscated the drugs during their investigation of Van Tuck's murder.
Through Duncan, Trevor discovers that the cannabis has been seized by the police and after destroying many of Duncan's possessions in a rage, the action moves back to London.
The narrator and Morty receive a call from Cody, telling them that he has located Kinky, Charlie's boyfriend, in a flat in King's Cross. Upon arriving at the flat, the men find that Kinky is dead of a heroin overdose, and one of the crackheads who was living with Kinky believes that Kinky was murdered.
The narrator is intrigued to learn that Kinky had turned up at the flat shortly before his death with Charlie and two grand in cash. The crackheads tell them that Charlie has gone to Brighton and the narrator sends Cody after her. Freddy subtly ridicules Morty and asks for some money. Morty and the narrator flee, with the narrator deeply troubled by what he has just witnessed. That night, the narrator visits Gene at his flat.
Gene goes over the beating in great detail and informs the narrator that if Freddy dies, the narrator is left with two options. He can either testify against Morty or he will go to prison as an accomplice to murder. Gene then goes on to explain that Freddy Hurst was an influential gangster in the late s in London, and that Gene and Morty were members of his crew.
After Kilburn Jerry killed himself and Morty was caught disposing of the body, Freddy was about to go away for about 12 years to serve concurrent sentences. Freddy could have gotten Morty off the hook but chose not to, leading to Morty doing 5 years in prison unnecessarily. The narrator gets very drunk with Gene, and the next day decides to arrange a meeting with Tammy at the Churchill Hotel.
While showering at the hotel before Tammy arrives, the narrator is kidnapped by two unidentified men and transported across London to The City. There he meets Eddie Temple, who explains that Jimmy has double-crossed the narrator. Jimmy had become involved in a scheme with some gangsters from Chechnya to download a consignment of non-existent Pakistani heroin.
Jimmy had been taken in by the gangsters and had lost nearly 13 million pounds.
In his rage, Jimmy believed that his old friend Eddie had arranged for Jimmy to be ensnared, and he therefore tasked the narrator to find Charlie, Eddie's daughter. Jimmy believed that if he could hold Charlie hostage, he could force Eddie to get his money back.
Eddie goes on to explain that Jimmy has been moonlighting as a police informer for a number of years. Jimmy tells Albie that he wants the narrator to be arrested for possession of drugs, which would result in a year sentence. Jimmy had sent the narrator to a dodgy accountant, and after the narrator is imprisoned, Jimmy was planning to take control of his assets to recover his lost wealth.
Eddie drops the narrator off back at the Churchill with the recording. The narrator decides to take matters into his own hands and proceeds to Jimmy's mansion in Totteridge. There, he sneaks into the grounds of Price's house and kills him with a gun he borrowed from Gene. The narrator heads back into London, where his colleagues are frantically trying to find out who killed Jimmy.
The narrator is convinced that he got away cleanly and is unconcerned. He is summoned with Morty to see Gene, who promptly beats the narrator viciously and breaks his wrist.
It transpires that Gene has discovered that the narrator killed Jimmy with the same gun that Gene used to kill Crazy Larry Flynn, a homosexual London gangster who had been friends with both Gene and Morty.
Upon producing the recording, the narrator manages to convince Gene and Morty that Jimmy was an informer, and they trust one another again. The narrator now decides to eliminate both of his remaining problems.
One, he has to stop Klaus the murderous Nazi and, two, he has to find a way to steal the pills back from the Yahoos. The narrator and Morty contact Shanks in Liverpool and get him to send an assassin down on the train. The narrator lures Klaus to Primrose Park and lies in wait with the sniper. The narrator spots a tall blonde man in the park and, believing this man to be Klaus, orders the sniper to kill him, which he does. The narrator then realises that they have killed the wrong man and see Klaus run away from the scene.
Gene flies into a rage when he hears what has happened, and dispatches some of his own men to find and kill Klaus, which they do. The narrator then contracts Cody to organise a false police raid on the Yahoos' hideout to steal back the pills. Cody and his team assault the hideout, posing as armed police. They allow the Yahoos to escape and they "confiscate" the pills.
Gene and the narrator find the Yahoos in a run-down bar and convince them that the police who raided them were crooked and have taken the pills for themselves. The narrator had previously worked out a deal with Eddie Ryder to give Ryder the pills in return for 2.
Thinking that his job is finally complete, the narrator and his colleagues take the pills to Eddie Temple's bonded warehouse at Heathrow Airport, where Temple is having the pills flown to Tokyo. Bank and credit card fraud is his trade, with a healthy dollop of hustling young women out of their trust funds for good measure. Turns out that the Yahoos have two million pounds' worth of Grade A ecstasy to sell, and Gene wants our narrator to handle the deal.
Things are looking up when Mort sets up his gang to meet up with a crew, headed by a man named Trevor, up in Northern England who he thinks will be perfect to unload the goods on. This crew informs our narrator that an Ecstasy factory has been hijacked—most likely by the Yahoos—and now a brutal neo-Nazi sect wants those pills back.
In a London housing project. It looks like a typical drug overdose, but a young kid drug dealer who helped Bogus find Kinky says he was murdered. Meanwhile, our narrator sets up a rendezvous with Tammy in a hotel room. As he steps out of the shower, two toughs ambush him, who roll him up in a carpet, and abduct him in a long box.The narrator sets about finding a downloader for the ecstasy pills, and he, Mortimer and Clarkie go to Liverpool to meet with Trevor and Shanks, two powerful North England drug dealers.
All the wonder and excitement in their hearts keep this time of year extra magical. One novel in and Connolly has hit the jackpot, jump-started British crime fiction into the present While many cake recipes are dripping with sprinkles and drowning in caramel and chocolate, sometimes less really is more.
A fall layer cake recipe by our contributor, Tessa Huff The shredded pears add plenty of moisture while the bit of almond meal lends great texture and flavor to this tender, little cake. And better yet, in cake form!! Plus, it will leave your kitchen smelling absolutely amazing! Gene was forced to kill him after Larry went "overboard" and started strangling rent boys Albie Carter — Jimmy Price's connection with the Regional Crime Squad.