Hello and welcome to my stop on the audio blog tour for The Game’s Gone by Simon Barnes. Thanks to Amber Choudhary of Midas Public Relations for the invite. I’m sharing a spotlight today, so if you’re a sports fan this is the audiobook for you, plus it’s narrated by Colin Mace, one of my favourite narrators!
No one would call David Rose – or ‘Rosie’ as he’s known to one and all – a star, but he’s good at his job and proud of his work as a sportswriter for a national newspaper. He’s used to seeing flashier talents come and go – both on the field, and in the competitive world of the press. Football comes first in the way he spends his working life, but he’s happy to pitch in whatever the sport – from Formula 1 to Test cricket in the West Indies, the Olympics to a heavyweight championship bout in Japan.
He’s used to the ups and downs of a journalist’s life and has learned to keep his own head safely down – until an especially venal boss pins his own misdemeanours on the entirely innocent Rose. Rosie’s revenge is slow butsweet, as he manoeuvres through a world where egos clash, money talks and you’re only as safe as your latest by-line.
Not since Richard Ford’s classic novel, The Sportswriter, has a novel caught the world of sports journalism so vividly and so well. A marvellous listen – funny, touching and compelling.
Simon Barnes was the Chief Sports Writer for The Times until 2014, having worked for the paper for 30 years, during which he covered seven Olympic Games and six World Cup finals. He writes about sports and wildlife and is the author of over 20 books, including the best-selling How to be a Bad Birdwatcher.
“It was only after I had left the asylum that I was truly aware of the madness. So I thought I’d try and write the madness before I forgot it. But I thought I’d better tone it down a bit – to make it believable.”