Mar 2007

Looking for a book

Not just any book. A specific one.

See, about fifteen years ago I read a novel. I can’t remember the title or the author and I haven’t got an entirely clear memory of the plot. But I do recall thinking it was very good, and I’d like to track it down again. Any chance, dear reader, that you know which book I’m talking about? Here’s what I do remember.

It is set, partly, in North London (in and around Finsbury Park) where the protagonist spends some of the novel living in one of those hotels that face onto the park. The main character is a man who is the victim of an (apparently) random assault in a supermarket carpark. He is shot in the head by his assailant but miraculously survives only to discover that he has been blinded by the attack. For much of the novel he is troubled by an image he cannot resolve, that of something shiny and red rolling through darkness. It is only later that he realises it was just a tomato, tumbling out of the grocery bag he dropped when shot… the last image he saw, burnt into his memory, before he is blinded. The cover of the edition I read was a blurred image of this.

The plot becomes strange, however, as the protagonist becomes convinced that he is seeing things, despite his blindness and this is further complicated by the fact that he may not actually be completely blind at all.

Any ideas anyone?

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