Author Topic: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review  (Read 48417 times)

Offline kriss

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #120 on: August 25, 2013, 01:47:11 PM »
"An attack on his very manhood. An assault on his unborn children."  Shanks to the Disciplinary Panel, defending Ian St John after he felled a Coventry City player. Bob Paisley smeared St John's 'goolies' with boot polish and iodine the previous day, and Shanks had journo's and photographers document them. His ban was halved.

The reality is that Ian St. John did not serve a ban at all. After being sent off at Coventry on Boxing Day 1967, the Saint started all twenty-nine matches from then until the end of the season. If David Peace indicates in his book that "the ban was halved" he is wrong but this is a novel not a biography and that means that he can say anything he wants to.

Offline Twelfth Man

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #121 on: August 25, 2013, 01:58:39 PM »
The reality is that Ian St. John did not serve a ban at all. After being sent off at Coventry on Boxing Day 1967, the Saint started all twenty-nine matches from then until the end of the season. If David Peace indicates in his book that "the ban was halved" he is wrong but this is a novel not a biography and that means that he can say anything he wants to.
I might have mis-read. Either way, not that important. Would love to know if the boot polish and iodine thing is true though.
The courts, the rich, the powerful or those in authority never lie. It has been dealt with 'by the courts' nothing to see here run along.

Offline kriss

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #122 on: August 25, 2013, 02:07:23 PM »
I might have mis-read. Either way, not that important. Would love to know if the boot polish and iodine thing is true though.

I believe it to be true Yes, partly because I had heard the story years before David Peace ever put pen to paper. I wrote about it here a few years ago http://www.lfchistory.net/Articles/Article/506.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2013, 02:09:26 PM by kriss »

Offline Fanxxxxtastic

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #123 on: August 25, 2013, 03:12:31 PM »
Just got a free copy of the Ebook when I downloaded Nook for my Android phone.

http://www.hotukdeals.com/freebies/free-ebooks-magazines-when-download-nook-mobile-app-1639414

Hahaha!  You mean my Android Dave ;)

Just read a wee bit of it.  It does come across as very strangely written, but I'm sure once I get into it I'll enjoy  it.
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Offline Dr_Evil

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #124 on: August 28, 2013, 09:36:45 AM »
I'm getting to the end of this now; the radio interview with Harold Wilson, the television interviews, the writing of the autobiography...which was banned by the Club Shop. I have to say, I knew most of this (not as well as I should), but it is harrowing to read. The invitations from all other clubs but Liverpool, training at Bellefield - the trip to the UEFA final vs Bruges when he thought he'd be with the official club party, but by himself.

43 year old man in tears. And that is even before you start trying to measure yourself, your life, your values against that/those of Bill's. Wrenching and inspirational.
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Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #125 on: August 28, 2013, 05:18:38 PM »
I've been worrying myself silly over Ness' cough for about 200 pages now. Heading towards the 1974 season finale. I'm feeling gutted. This is where I come in, when I became conscious of this football thing.
Everything from and post 74 Cup Final is my life. The rest is gonna hurt bad, I reckon.
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

Offline Hypias_noggin

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #126 on: August 29, 2013, 09:22:56 PM »
Best place to buy this in town?


Offline Twelfth Man

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #127 on: August 29, 2013, 10:06:15 PM »
I believe it to be true Yes, partly because I had heard the story years before David Peace ever put pen to paper. I wrote about it here a few years ago http://www.lfchistory.net/Articles/Article/506.
Cheers for that. It is those little details and anecdotes that makes the book compelling reading.
The courts, the rich, the powerful or those in authority never lie. It has been dealt with 'by the courts' nothing to see here run along.

Offline kennedy81

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #128 on: August 30, 2013, 12:44:19 PM »
Really enjoyed Peace's depiction of the Ajax game in 1966, played in the heavy fog. How he describes the Ajax players as ghosts drifting in and out of the fog is fantastic. And how it affected Shankly afterwards as he went over the game in his mind, how he had seen Ajax play the football he had been dreaming about.
Really great stuff.

Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #129 on: August 30, 2013, 12:59:36 PM »
Best place to buy this in town?


I imagine Waterstone's or News From Nowhere - both on Bold Street - should have copies.
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #130 on: August 30, 2013, 01:03:47 PM »
Finally finished this last night. Have to say I feel like I've read something profound and momentous. It's almost the closest this particular atheist will get to a religious experience. Can't really express how
much I loved this book...yet. Will try and shape my thoughts into some sort of review over the weekend, when I have a bit more time, and post it here.

Suffice it to say, I was inspired by this book. I found it inspirational, in the same way some people gain inspiration through self-help books or particularly brilliant sermons.
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

Offline MichaelA

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #131 on: August 30, 2013, 01:14:00 PM »
I found it inspirational, in the same way some people gain inspiration through self-help books

In my review I've uploaded four photos of some of the key passages in the book. I have the "Bill knew defeat became routine" as my desktop background - defeat carries spades to bury you, failure carries chains to bind you, etc. It's supposed to inspire me to do good work instead of piss about on the internet. ;)

Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #132 on: August 30, 2013, 01:31:42 PM »
In my review I've uploaded four photos of some of the key passages in the book. I have the "Bill knew defeat became routine" as my desktop background - defeat carries spades to bury you, failure carries chains to bind you, etc. It's supposed to inspire me to do good work instead of piss about on the internet. ;)

 :) Ha!

I have to admit, the book has totally disarmed me of my cynicism. I feel quite earnest today. Not sure for how long it will last, though.

One particular episode - later in the book, when Bill's retired - in which he visits an injured 16-year-old football player at Alder Hey hospital...I found utterly overwhelming. It became a synthesis, to me, of all
the man stood for: his ability to motivate, his simple, everyday Christian socialism, his psychological astuteness, his determination. In short, his goodness. Just a brilliant passage of prose. Realistic, yet somehow more like an allegory. Something like Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress. Simple, direct, highlighting quite consciously and unashamedly the greatness of the man.
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

Offline Dr_Evil

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #133 on: August 30, 2013, 02:37:47 PM »
In my review I've uploaded four photos of some of the key passages in the book. I have the "Bill knew defeat became routine" as my desktop background - defeat carries spades to bury you, failure carries chains to bind you, etc. It's supposed to inspire me to do good work instead of piss about on the internet. ;)

Bill knew you should work hard for your employers...not try to fool them ;-)
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Offline Dr_Evil

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #134 on: August 30, 2013, 02:40:40 PM »

One particular episode - later in the book, when Bill's retired - in which he visits an injured 16-year-old football player at Alder Hey hospital...I found utterly overwhelming. It became a synthesis, to me, of all
the man stood for: his ability to motivate, his simple, everyday Christian socialism, his psychological astuteness, his determination. In short, his goodness. Just a brilliant passage of prose. Realistic, yet somehow more like an allegory. Something like Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress. Simple, direct, highlighting quite consciously and unashamedly the greatness of the man.

Yes....I loved that passage too; it follows the encounter with the small boy at a deserted Anfield when he gives him his Liverpool lapel badge for his dad.

I agree with you about it being an almost religious experience; it is close to overwhelming at times.
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Offline Twelfth Man

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #135 on: September 1, 2013, 01:16:27 PM »
Half way through the book now, up to 1970. One of the things I love about it is reminiscing with older mates at work, a Leyton Orient fan, remembering how we both came up together from the second Division, telling me how, us beating Inter at Anfield was one of the best games he'd ever seen. Having a laugh with my Leicester City mate, and how they were a bit of a nemesis for us.
The courts, the rich, the powerful or those in authority never lie. It has been dealt with 'by the courts' nothing to see here run along.

Offline kennedy81

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #136 on: September 2, 2013, 01:36:02 AM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/fhjaCj8LuLE?fs=1" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/fhjaCj8LuLE?fs=1</a>

Offline Alan B'Stard

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #137 on: September 2, 2013, 09:27:51 AM »
My copy was purchased over the weekend. Cant wait to start it.
Anyone finished it yet? what are your thoughts?
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Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #138 on: September 4, 2013, 02:48:52 PM »
After I finished this book last Thurs/Friday, I was aiming to write as an immediate response as possible. I was going to briefly write down a few thoughts, but I got a bit carried away. Excuse typos, rhetorical flourishes etc.

Red or Dead by David Peace – A Review.

Oscar Wilde's famously argued that, “The truth is rarely pure and never simple.” Biographies and autobiographies it must be said, on the whole, bare out this maxim. They are usually one-sided, biased, mostly with an axe to grind or score to settle. I, like many others I suspect, read biographies/autobiographies armed with suspicion, on the look out for subtext. And so what of fiction in relation to Wilde's observations about truth? What of the completely made up stuff? Oddly, one might argue, in many ways, fiction can sometime shine a light upon and uncover a truth more clearly than non-fiction. Sometimes. Paradoxical as it may seem, in many ways, the spirit of a universal truth can sometimes be found not in the bald facts, but through the act of imagination. Through the act of creation. Religious texts are acts of the imagination, contain very few actual facts, yet millions across the globe find within their pages truths upon which to live their lives.

Wilde's sentiments feels even more ironic when sitting down to review David Peace's Red Or Dead, because if there is one thing we know for sure about Bill Shankly, then it's the value he invested in honesty, truth and simplicity. Perhaps, then, a fictional account of Shankly's life may bring us closer to the truth of man, reveal the man of honesty and simplicity, bring light to his life, to his footballing philosophy, perhaps even help us understand the tenets of his socialism.

I started reading Red or Dead on the eve of the new football season. As somebody who is sick of modern football, I was in need of some inspiration for the up-coming season. And, after 90 minutes in the company of BT sports Michael Owen, I sensed it was going to be increasingly difficult to find this season. Nor was I willing to go looking for it in the increasingly hyperactive presentation from the game's owners, Sky Sport. In contrast to the modern game, Peace's book on Shankly shows us a simpler time, (not innocent, however, and far from it) in which the hype, hyperbole and large sprinkling of horseshit we have to sit through via Sky, didn't triumph over skill, determination and tactical nous. The importance of the collective endeavour of the team espoused by Shankly, and any modern day manager worth his salt – yet seemingly forgotten in the presentation of the game these days – seems at odds with the British neoliberal model of football, especially the football model which sells itself on the individual brilliance of one player in a particular team. And, as John Barnes reminded us so eloquently on BBC2's Newsnight prior to the season's beginning, these multi-millionaire superstars now appear to think of themselves above the team. Better than the team, indeed. Something which Shankly wouldn't have allowed to take root within any of the clubs he managed.

Red or Dead is built around a rather conventional and straight forward narrative – unlike say the brilliantly executed Dammed United, which switched from the past tense, showing Clough's journey from deadly, clinical centre forward, injured and on the scrap head, to the present day 1974 and his acceptance of the job as manager of Leeds United. The switching of the narrative from past to present worked within that particular book for many reasons, most notably as a way to show and explore the roots of Clough's almost pathological hatred for Don Revie's Leed's United.

Perhaps Bill Shankly's life was more straightforward. He lived it straight. Straight and honest. Thus the narrative runs (quite literally) with ever growing momentum and dynamism in one direction: from 1959 up to his death in 1981. The vast majority of the book takes place between 1959 and 1974, and is concerned with the minutiae of pre-season training, of pre-match preparation, of game after game after game. It's only when you immerse yourself in a text such as this and read hundreds of pages of the prose in one sitting, that you realise that football, like history, is just one fucking thing after another. One game after another. One post season after another. One pre-season after another. One league season after another. One cup competition after another. And Peace also shows what Shankly knew instinctively: greatness comes with repetition, with dedication, with passion, with obsession to the task, the sport, the art, you have chosen to pursue. If you cannot dedicate yourself to becoming great at your thing, then all the natural ability in the world will not suffice. For, just as we see today with the many exceptional athletes, in many different fields –  both in football and other sports – it is the hours and hours on the training pitch, the hours and hours of honing and refining muscle memory. It this which counts most, this which breeds success.

Just as we see with outstanding artists, musicians etc. it is the hours of repetition, the hours of dedication, the hours of passionate obsession you dedicate to your art, your sport, your thing; it is the hours and hours of repetition that makes the difference. And Shankly knew this. And Shankly practiced this. Think of how many times Shankly used the phrase “drum(med) in to them.” Shankly not only tried to mould the player, through drumming things into them, but also attempted to mould the man, build the character. Bill saw that dedication, ability and character make the great footballer, and perhaps in Kevin Keegan we saw the greatest example of what a Shankly footballer should look like. Not the greatest or most natural football player to be born, yet – under the tutelage of Shankly – shaped into perhaps the first modern football specimen. 

For some reviewers and readers this matching, this parallelling of form, style, structure and subject matter is too much. It the biggest criticism used against Peace, especially from those who say the 'general' reader (whatever/whoever that is) cannot possibly be expected to 'get' this form of literary modernism. Indeed the repetition and the endless description of Bill undertaking even the most mundane of tasks can take up page after page. And, to an extent, I agree with the critics. But only insofar as if you are going to treat this book lightly, if you are only going to dip in and read a handful pages at a time...Then, of course, it is bound to alienate. It's a book that requires you to pick up its rhythm, to follow it prose style like you would an intricate jazz composition, a classical music symphony or a concept album. However, I would advise if you are going attack this colossus of a book (walk around it, it must be seven feet tall!) take it on as Shankly would take it on. With passion, with utter and total dedication, with an obsession bordering on the insane. Devote yourself to it. Forget about your loved ones for a week or two. Forget the missus/partner exists. Dedicate yourself to this book. Lose yourself in the book, lose yourself to the hypnotic prose, dedicate yourself to the rhythms of the prose, like a whirling dervish entranced to the sound of sufi music. Follow the ups and downs of the football season. Get all the facts and figures. See titles won and lost, cup finals won and lost. Derbies won and lost and drawn.

It is is literally all here. Everything you ever wanted to know about Liverpool FC – 1959 to 1974 – but where too afraid to ask yer arl fella.   

In many ways, Peace also shows us that Shankly was a revolutionary figure, too. He revolutionised football. Shankly came around at the right time to revolutionise not just the sport, but popular working class culture. There was that moment of great synchronicity – the revolutionary popular culture and emerging youth culture of the period coinciding with Shankly's revolution at Anfield. The Merseybeat and emergence of modern day football culture are conceived at that moment when Shankly emerges as the first, great modern football manager. Indeed, the dialectic between Shankly and the crowd creates the sort of football atmosphere we all take for granted today.     

Despite what many may say about how Shankly would hate the game today, that he would have no place, that he would be lost etc. I have to say I'm not so sure. The excessive money and antics of 'star' players engineering moves would obviously sicken him. However, his methods, his tactical nous, his attention to detail, his training and match preparation appear to be cutting edge for the time. His knowledge of players, (from the first division to the fourth) of upcoming fixtures from all leagues, appeared encyclopedic. I'm not sure many modern day football managers are as ahead of the game in this day, as Shankly appeared to be during his. Indeed, there is a reason why for a decade or more we were the best team in Europe. It didn't happen by chance. And that it continued without Bill at the helm says even more for the way he transformed the club. The foundations lasted because of all the work Shankly put in from 1959 to 1974. Take away the obscene finances, and I'd belief Shankly would be well at home pitting his wits against Pep, Jose, Jurgen, Carlos, Rafa and the other top European managers.

And yet despite the brilliance of the man, he was a real man of the people. This phrase is often over-used and not really applicable today to a world of millionaire celebrities, overpaid footballers and even most lefty politicians. How somebody so famous, so popular, so adored, could still act as an everyman, as one of the people, as a man who would stand next to you on the Kop, is quite staggering in that age and in this. Stories of his every day kindness, especially after his retirement, flow from the pages. His gestures of unthinking charity and kindness as important to him as his days as a football manager. People mattered to Shanks. One episode which shows his visit to an injured teenager footballer in Alder Hey hospital is inspirational. And I mean properly inspirational. I wanted to get off my fat arse and run a few miles and cycle like mad, then swim a few lengths of the baths, immediately after reading. Imagine what this man was like in the dressing room? No wonder we became famous as team which never gave in, which came from behind, which scored so many last minute goals. The spirit of Istanbul was forged across the dressing rooms of the 1960s England. 

Having said all that I have, is there an absence of war, an absence of conflict from the narrative? All great literature at some point must present the protagonist with an antagonist, right? In The Damned United, Peace presents Clough's hubris in taking on the Leeds United job, and his ultimate failure. Peace presents Clough in conflict with directors and the board of Derby County Football Club for large parts of that novel. Most of all, it shows Clough wrestling with his own, inner demons.   

In Red or Dead there are hints of conflict with LFC directors. One or two episodes of conflict with players. Hints that Bill may have been fighting some inner demons, and his behaviour after numbing defeats, especially his obsessive cleaning of the kitchen, oven etc are suggestive of this. There are also brief moments were we suspect that there may be a hint of resentment at the manner in which he is treated by Liverpool Football Club after his retirement. But, as Bill says to the media when interviewed about his biography after his retirement, why do you highlight the one per cent of criticism, when the book is ninety-nine per cent praise and support of others?

So, if not conflict, then what? Poignancy perhaps. There are passages after August 1974 which made me search for invisible dust particles lodged in those impossible to reach areas of my eyes. For instance, Bill on the outside looking in at one of the greatest football teams of all time many triumphs. The team he helped to build, winning the trophy that so cruelly alluded him – the European Cup. Indeed one the most profound moments in the entire book is not the winning of trophies, not the devastating defeats but a simple scene in a West Derby cafe during Bill's retirement. This is the literature, this is the great writing. This is the truth that fact cannot quite capture. It is in these little moments of pathos where we glimpse both the greatness of the man and the greatness of the writer.

Make no mistake, Red or Dead is a hagiography – something Peace openly admits. He once wrote that Marx and Engel's Communist Manifesto was the fifth gospel and in some ways reading Red or Dead is analogous to a religious experience. The text is suffused with religiosity. Bill saying his prayers, Bill on his knees praying for Matt Busby and those who lost their lives in Munich. Bill's sacrifices and sermons. Bill in retirement akin to a Jesus:

“Bill carried these memories. A great weight Bill bore, a piece of wood Bill carried. A piece of wood which left Bill with splinters, splinters in his back. In his shoulders and in his neck. But splinters which gave Bill faith, splinters which made Bill believe. Believe in the things that had been, once. Believe in the things that could be, again. After the resurrection, before the resurrection...”

But the religiosity of Red Or Dead is not exclusively to be found in Bill's own Christianity, which he practises every day with the people he meets, and with as much dedication as he does in the training drills he used for his players. The religiosity is apparent in the book's form, in its very structure, in the books very DNA. For it is devotional book. Like the music of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's sufi inspired songs, like a Buddhist mantra, chanted over and over, or a Gregorian chant. The narrative is a devotional song to it's hero. Like the heroes of the ancient epics, many of which were thought to have been sung aloud, this novel should heard orally. And like those great epics and like those great devotional songs, the effect is the same. The intention is the same. And that intention is to transform one's consciousness.

And reading this book is transformational.

If not the Bible, then it is the Das Kapital of football books. In one brilliant passage Peace even paraphrases the Italian marxist Antonio Gramsci. “The old was dying and the new could not be born.” It is an epic tome about an epic man. A man who lived a life as simple and basic as Mahatma Ghandi. Shankly's socialism, like his Christianity, is simple. It's not the socialism of scientific schema or Leninist dogma. It is what Billy Bragg once referred to as socialism of the heart. The socialism of the everyday, brought to life most vividly in his conversations with the then Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilson.

Reading this book is transformational. I agree with The Farm's Peter Hooton, who upon reading the book said he felt like a Jehovah's Witness and wanted to knock upon doors imploring others to read it.

So, if you too wish for a transformative experience, read this book. If you're an atheist, like myself, it's the nearest thing through literature (scripture?) you'll have to a religious experience. As Peace recently said, Shankly was not just a great football man, he was a great man. One of the great men of the 20th century. Be inspired by the great man and read the book. The book about a great, inspirational man. Billy Shankly.
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #139 on: September 4, 2013, 07:23:54 PM »
Terrific stuff pal.
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Offline MichaelA

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #140 on: September 4, 2013, 07:59:15 PM »
Awesome - I agree with every word you have written, and if I'd written a 'proper' review instead of a cheap parody I couldn't have hoped to have matched your eloquence. I'm off to read your review again. Thank you.

Offline Dr_Evil

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #141 on: September 4, 2013, 08:39:20 PM »
Saorise - that's perfect. I finished it on Saturday night and can't bring myself to read anything else - a period of 'literature mourning'. YouTube and Shankly remembered programmes on LFC TV assisting with POD withdrawal....
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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #142 on: September 4, 2013, 08:48:35 PM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/fhjaCj8LuLE?fs=1" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/fhjaCj8LuLE?fs=1</a>
I loved that so much, I could have sat for hours and hours listening to that.

Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #143 on: September 5, 2013, 07:54:23 PM »
Awesome - I agree with every word you have written, and if I'd written a 'proper' review instead of a cheap parody I couldn't have hoped to have matched your eloquence. I'm off to read your review again. Thank you.

Thanks, Michael. And thanks for the wonderful OP to get this thread started. There really has been some brilliant writing on this site over the past couple of months linked to Shankly 100th anniversary.

@Dr_Evil  Same here. Felt a bit bereft after finishing it. I've been dipping back in and out, rereading some passages on the sly. Last night I held The Damned United in one hand and Peace's first Japanese-based book, which I haven't yet read, in the other. It was late and I was too tired to begin either. But I'm tempted to reread The Damned United again. Now, of course, officially the second best contemporary novel about football management.

@Yorkykopite  Cheers! Much appreciated. Love your writing on here by the way.
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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #144 on: September 6, 2013, 01:00:44 PM »
Fantastic review that Saoirse.  I totally agree about the evangelical fervour that it inspires.  Hooto may have wanted to knock on doors.

I want it to become an entrance exam for access to the Kop, for access to RAWK.

Seriously, there is much written about what is "The Liverpool Way", about those who simply do not get it.  This book is constructed from the very DNA of it.  Our fans should be made to read it.  All of them.

But the boys on the Kop they never gave up.  They shouted and they roared.  They roared and they shouted.  And so the team, the team never gave up, they ran and they ran.   They ran and they tackled. The passed and they passed.  They passed and they shot. 
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Bill Shankly - 'The socialism I believe in is not really politics; it is humanity, a way of living and sharing the rewards'

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #145 on: September 6, 2013, 01:18:37 PM »
I've been lucky enough to exchange a couple of emails with David Peace, and on Monday, the day of the Shankly Anniversary, I sent him the links to this thread and yorky's interview. I also sent him a photo of the Glenbuck Memorial that hinesy and I visited on the way back from the United game. David lives in Tokyo, so there is a big time difference. When I woke up on Tuesday morning I found this in my inbox:

Quote
Hello Michael, and I hope you are well. Thank you so very, very much for your message, for the links and, especially, for the photograph. I have printed it off and it is now on my wall above my desk. Thank you, Michael. It sounds like you had a great day yesterday and, despite this also being "deadline day" and all that represents, it must be a great feeling to be top of the League on the day of Bill Shankly's actual centenary. Well done! Thanks again, Michael, for all your support and friendship and please keep in touch. Best wishes, David

Bless him. Bless Bill.  :wave


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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #146 on: September 6, 2013, 01:58:09 PM »
.

@Dr_Evil  Same here. Felt a bit bereft after finishing it. I've been dipping back in and out, rereading some passages on the sly. Last night I held The Damned United in one hand and Peace's first Japanese-based book, which I haven't yet read, in the other. It was late and I was too tired to begin either. But I'm tempted to reread The Damned United again. Now, of course, officially the second best contemporary novel about football management.


Haha...yes, I started to re-read 'The Damned United' too. I hadn't noticed 'The Argument II' at the beginning of the book before - 'The Argument III' is at the end of ROD. Where is 'The Argument I'?
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Offline The 92A

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #147 on: September 6, 2013, 02:14:48 PM »
First Michael's original review, then Yorkie's interview and then Saorise's review. RAWK at it's finest. Why we bother with the Darren from Thretfords, the transfer forum and the 'want it now' boys. The chance to come across posts like this. I want to be in an alehouse talking about it rarely do you read a review and sit there nodding along in complete agreement. Thanks.
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Offline Cracking Left Foot

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #148 on: September 6, 2013, 02:15:29 PM »
I finished it last week, but for some reason couldn't post on this thread.

Anyway, what an incredible piece of work (I think 'book' doesn't quite do it justice). The last half makes for difficult reading at times, but so good. Going to need a couple of days to process it all, but one standout passage for me was where Bill tears a strip off a journalist -  it's incredibly powerful, and of course foreshadows what happened after Hillsborough. Hope nobody minds me quoting it in full, but I think it deserves it:

"There was water dripping on me throughout the match. And there were little boys and little girls with only singlets on. They had spent all their money to get here. And they were soaked to their skins for their trouble. And then you people come out in the media and you say, These are the people we don't want. They are hooligans. Hooligans. And we don't want them here. And that really appalls me. It appalls me. The way you make them sit or stand in the rain in pens. The way you treat them like animals, worse than animals. Branding them as animals, branding them as hooligans. And hoping they will not come. Don't you realise that without these people, these boys and girls, there would be no game? Don't you realise that throughout the country these are the people who will spend all their money and do without a pair of shoes to support their team? Don't you bloody realise? Don't you fucking care?"

I think (possibly, I've not checked) it's also the only time in the book that Bill says 'fuck', which makes it all the more powerful.

Nice namecheck for RAWK poster Wooltonian in the credits as well.

Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #149 on: September 6, 2013, 04:41:30 PM »
Cheers lads.

I finished it last week, but for some reason couldn't post on this thread.

Anyway, what an incredible piece of work (I think 'book' doesn't quite do it justice). The last half makes for difficult reading at times, but so good. Going to need a couple of days to process it all, but one standout passage for me was where Bill tears a strip off a journalist -  it's incredibly powerful, and of course foreshadows what happened after Hillsborough. Hope nobody minds me quoting it in full, but I think it deserves it:

"There was water dripping on me throughout the match. And there were little boys and little girls with only singlets on. They had spent all their money to get here. And they were soaked to their skins for their trouble. And then you people come out in the media and you say, These are the people we don't want. They are hooligans. Hooligans. And we don't want them here. And that really appalls me. It appalls me. The way you make them sit or stand in the rain in pens. The way you treat them like animals, worse than animals. Branding them as animals, branding them as hooligans. And hoping they will not come. Don't you realise that without these people, these boys and girls, there would be no game? Don't you realise that throughout the country these are the people who will spend all their money and do without a pair of shoes to support their team? Don't you bloody realise? Don't you fucking care?"

I think (possibly, I've not checked) it's also the only time in the book that Bill says 'fuck', which makes it all the more powerful.

Nice namecheck for RAWK poster Wooltonian in the credits as well.

I'd forgotten about that piece. Brilliant bit of writing. The first time I had a shiver down the spine moment was early in the book when Bill Shankly is alone in the Hillsborough dressing room after a semi final defeat to Leicester (I think) and he's slumped, unable to leave the dressing room - skin sticking to his shirt, shirt sticking to his suit etc. Something about it seemed to be foreshadowing the aftermath of Hillsborough 1989. It ends with a brilliant rendition of YNWA. Powerful section and just reminded me of that day.
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

Offline saoirse08

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #150 on: September 6, 2013, 04:45:22 PM »
I've been lucky enough to exchange a couple of emails with David Peace, and on Monday, the day of the Shankly Anniversary, I sent him the links to this thread and yorky's interview. I also sent him a photo of the Glenbuck Memorial that hinesy and I visited on the way back from the United game. David lives in Tokyo, so there is a big time difference. When I woke up on Tuesday morning I found this in my inbox:

Bless him. Bless Bill.  :wave



That's superb. it's fantastic that he's so accessible and so prepared to engage with the fans the way he has. That interview with Yorky was one of the best things I've read on here. Much better than you'd see in official LFC magazines etc or national newspapers for that matter. 
“The socialism I believe in is everyone working for each other, everyone having a share of the rewards. It’s the way I see football, the way I see life.”

"The old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear."

Offline JTK

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #151 on: September 6, 2013, 05:08:31 PM »
Seen some poor reviews for this, but after reading the opinions here I came to thinking that maybe they just didn't "get it".

Cheers for the input here - Micheal A & Saoirse especially, Peace should've employ the two of you to do his marketing, there's some great writing there in itself and you've just sold the book to this red.

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #152 on: September 7, 2013, 04:40:41 PM »
This whole thing, every aspect of it, has filled me with joy. The book itself has also rekindled my work-related oomph.

Well done and thanks to the lot of you, not least Mr Peace. :)

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #153 on: September 8, 2013, 08:35:02 PM »
Bump
Yep.

Offline Filler.

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #154 on: September 8, 2013, 09:50:12 PM »
I've been lucky enough to exchange a couple of emails with David Peace, and on Monday, the day of the Shankly Anniversary, I sent him the links to this thread and yorky's interview. I also sent him a photo of the Glenbuck Memorial that hinesy and I visited on the way back from the United game. David lives in Tokyo, so there is a big time difference. When I woke up on Tuesday morning I found this in my inbox:

Nice. Is he a Fall fan tho? ;)

'Repetition itself creates bliss.' as Roland Barthes once said.

Offline MichaelA

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #155 on: September 8, 2013, 10:51:46 PM »
Nice. Is he a Fall fan tho? ;)

'Repetition itself creates bliss.' as Roland Barthes once said.

Yes - I asked him when I met him and he wearily acknowledged the influence of MES. I also asked him about John Cooper Clarke;

The fucking pies are fucking old
The fucking chips are fucking cold
The fucking beer is fucking flat
The fucking flats have fucking rats
The fucking clocks are fucking wrong
The fucking days are fucking long
It fucking gets you fucking down
Evidently Chickentown

And he is/was a fan.

I also asked him if he was a Catholic, because so much of the book reminded me of mass, the repetition of phrases in different patterns, the catechism and the penance. He was dragged to mass by a Catholic mother. A little joke for Catholics - when I asked him about church I cracked the 'Peace be with you', 'and also with you' line, which caused a wee ripple of laughter in the book festival tent.

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #156 on: September 9, 2013, 08:21:04 PM »
Yes - I asked him when I met him and he wearily acknowledged the influence of MES.

'Wearily'. I can imagine ;D

And yes... forgot about Chickentown. Good spot. I too was dragged to mass by a Catholic mother as a youngster, and spent a hellish year kicking and screaming on a Saturday morning missing Tiswas for a year (A SATURDAY FUCKING MORNING - FOR A FUCKING YEAR!), only to learn that I was enrolled on the wrong class, and would have to do it all again, from the beginning. The Beginning. For a year. Again. Not sure what look I gave her, but that was that. I was a year older. A bit stronger. I think I was 10/11 at the time.


The rich vein of ideas that circumnavigates the base idea of repetition, or at least excavates parts of it to give some kind of meaning, is immense tho. It's always fascinated me.

I also like the 'bleakness' in the language. I'm half way thru the 72/73 season, just past that wonderful conversation with Jock Stein about Lou Macari and I can't remember the word 'beautiful' in it in the whole book. There's nothing floral. Nothing to wistfully allow your brain to idly wander with.


Book should be read to this LP tho (book should be read in total peace - I'm mearly using this line for imagery), not the Fall. Faust with Tony Conrad (1972): (don't click on it now for a taster as it will put you off... just click on it one day when everybody's out and you can give it some volume. It's a bit of a classic.


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/FGMnDcwoXns?hl=en_US&amp;amp;version=3" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/FGMnDcwoXns?hl=en_US&amp;amp;version=3</a>
« Last Edit: September 9, 2013, 08:36:35 PM by Filler. »

Offline Mal

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #157 on: September 10, 2013, 11:30:33 PM »

I also like the 'bleakness' in the language. I'm half way thru the 72/73 season, just past that wonderful conversation with Jock Stein about Lou Macari and I can't remember the word 'beautiful' in it in the whole book. There's nothing floral. Nothing to wistfully allow your brain to idly wander with.


I read it last week.

Jock: "What's that Bill? What is it than Manchester United can offer Lou Macari that Liverpool cannot"

Bill: "First team football John. First Team Football"

Genius.
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Offline Robotforaday

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #158 on: September 16, 2013, 06:46:51 PM »
I finished the book today. I won't go into a full review or critique, other people have done that far better than I could. I've read Peace's books before, so knew what to expect - loved GB84 and the Damned Utd, found the Red Riding Quartet hard going.

All I can say is that I found the book truly inspiring. It makes me want to live my life better.

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Re: #SHANKLY100 - David Peace: 'Red or Dead' - The RAWK Review
« Reply #159 on: September 24, 2013, 11:26:24 PM »
All I can say is that I found the book truly inspiring. It makes me want to live my life better.

Got 60 pages to go. Feel the exact same. Just got past his visit to the hospital of the young lad with a spinal injury. I wobbled a bit, as I did about the badge just before it. Getting to the stage where you prepare for the last close of the book. Going to miss it.