The Amateurs: A Novel
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— The Times (London)
“A novel about golf that is not only hilarious, but gripping, sexy, violent, and outrageous. . . . Niven combines his increasingly bizarre plots, and some shocking behavior, with considerable skill and, of course, large helpings of humor.”
— The Mirror
From Kill Your Friends author John Niven, The Amateurs is a side-splitting and whip-smart examination of golf, infidelity, and how little white balls make some men insane.
Another second, the whine powering up then resolving into a massed ‘Ooooohhh . . .’. As he walked onto the green, into all the clapping and cheering, Gary saw that his ball was nestled just inches from the cup. He became aware of three things. He had the simplest of tap-ins to break the course record. The fizzing sensation in his skull was intensifying, like the lemonade in there was beginning to boil. The erection in his pants was reaching a scarcely believable pitch of rigidity. Dreamlike now
‘Dorr-kay’ in the full Ayrshire manner and incomprehensible to Cheeks’ ears. ‘Sorry! Shit! Fucking Malteser-heeded cunt. FUCK! Grrrrrrr!’ ‘What’d he say?’ Cheeks asked Stevie. ‘YA FUCKING BLACK B—’ Gary began. Before he could finish the sentence Stevie booted Gary in the balls as hard as he possibly could and he went down growling in agony in front of everyone in the clubhouse lobby. ‘Sorry about that, folks,’ Stevie said, helping Gary to his feet and towards the door. He turned back to the
to sort this out. So, why don’t ye just tell us where he is, eh? And then we can all get on with our day and Frank here’ll no have to carve a pair o’ smiley faces into your wee lassie’s fucking cheeks.’ Lisa started to cry, her head bowed down, hair covering her face. Over her shoulder Alec saw her mobile phone sitting on the counter next to the sink. He reached out and picked it up. Into ‘Received calls’ and there was a Glasgow number. Alec had dialled it before Lisa realised what he was doing.
grilled tomatoes, mushrooms, beans and potato scones, he’d piled a couple of pastries on the side, perhaps as a kind of dessert, April wondered? Lawson grunted, ignoring the sarcasm, and asked, ‘How’s your boy this morning?’ ‘Actually, Donald, this is his wife.’ April gestured to Pauline. ‘Pauline Irvine, Donald Lawson.’ ‘Hi.’ Pauline smiled. ‘Pleased to meet you. Watch what you tell this one,’ he said, continuing on his way. ‘Shall we?’ April said to Pauline, motioning to a nearby table for
this is yer fucking game, is it? The minute ye think he might be ontae the big time suddenly he’s no such a bad deal and auld muggins here can get himself tae fuck, eh? Eh, ya fucking boot, ye?’ Masterson had only ever put a little money between himself and the animal that grew up on Wilton Terrace. It had just taken a few drinks and the right circumstances for the animal to come snarling back. ‘Please keep your voice down!’ Pauline hissed. Everyone passing by was looking at the dishevelled,