A Decent Ride by Irvine Welsh - review by Lucian Robinson

Lucian Robinson

Taxi, Please

A Decent Ride


Jonathan Cape 482pp £12.99 order from our bookshop

Hurricanes are in vogue in recent fiction; Richard Ford’s Let Me Be Frank with You and Ben Lerner’s 10:04 both used Hurricane Sandy to structure their narratives. In Irvine Welsh’s tenth novel, A Decent Ride, Hurricane Bawbag, which passed through Scotland in December 2011, does similar work as a temporal reference and as an exemplar of the Scottish ability to greet adversity with a stoicism born of familiarity. 

Maybe there is also an allusion here to the largely hostile critical reception that Welsh’s recent work has received and his fundamental indifference to it. Ever since Robert Macfarlane’s brutal review in 2006 of The Bedroom Secrets of the Master Chefs in the New York Times (‘It fails at every

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter