Raymond Marks is a normal boy, from a normal family, in a normal northern town. His Dad left home after falling in love with a five-string banjo; his fun-hating Gran believes she should have married Jean-Paul Sartre: ‘I could never read his books, but y’could tell from his picture, there was nothing frivolous about Jean-Paul Sartre.’ Felonious Uncle Jason and Appalling Aunty Paula are lusting after the satellite dish; frogs are flattened on Failsworth Boulevard; and Sickening Sonia’s being sick in the majestic cathedral of words. Raymond Marks is a normal boy, from a normal family, in a normal northern town. Until, on the banks of the Rochdale Canal, the flytrapping craze begins and, for Raymond and his Mam, nothing is ever quite so normal again.
Reviews of The Wrong Boy
‘Willy Russell doesn’t read – he performs. With his Rochdale accent, flattened adolescent intonation, his whispering, jibbering and shouting, he fills the listener’s head – and creates Raymond, the real boy. It’s a remarkble performance and should be compulsory listening for those hot on tackling crime without trying to understand the causes of crime’. Rachel Redford, The Observer.
‘His own dramatic reading is hypnotically compelling. I found scenes from the story still whirling round my head days after I had finished listening to it.’ Christina Hardyment, The Independent.