The Furgle And The Frimp
From an imagination as fertile as the Sahara Desert during a particularly dry drought comes this blockbusting, swashbuckling, epic comic saga.
Murder and mythology, kidnapping and corporate corruption, love and laughter, thrills and spills, death-defying stunts and the craziest cast of cliched characters ever entrusted with saving the world.
It's all in this incredible tale of very hot curry and its anti-social after effects, an imminent alien invasion, an ancient Greek god, baked beans which glow in the dark, a space-travelling Citroen 2CV, and the full, formidable, force of the Waggly Finger.
Just remember, flatulence could get you everywhere.
The story behind the story
This was the first full-length book I completed. And, bearing in mind I started it at the age of 13 or 14, then it's hardly surprising that it's full of toilet humour and flatulence. However, over the years, I have repeatedly returned to it, tweaked it, and have just never been able to let it go because ultimately, and quite simply, it still makes me laugh.
Its juvenile origins were such that the main protagonist was originally called nothing more original than 'The Big Puff', before I learned about actually doing some basic research, and discovered the apparent god of wind.
It was always the case that the main love interest was going to be French, but way back when I started, the only female French name that sprang immediately to mind was Simone. And I had absolutely no idea what her second name was going to be or if, in fact, she needed one.
But as my way with words 'improved' (I use the term advisedly), Simone morphed into the fabulously fanciable Francesca Francais, from France, because it amused me, and I do like my alliteration.
My Chinese 'profit' was originally called Dung Loo Pan, but I changed it purely because I had come up with the one-liner about his daughter.
In 1991, I started working in a two-man office of a regional daily newspaper. My partner-in-crime, a man 20 years my senior, is a remarkable wordsmith. He also had a particular affinity for female bottoms - the walls of our office were adorned with 'artistic' postcards. Through his thesaurus-like mind, I discovered words I had never heard before, including many that related to bottoms, and which I subsequently used as character names. For example, Nates, Cally Pygous (calipygous meaning 'shapely buttocks'), and Professor Boris Fartzheimer became Rumple Podex.
But my real-life partner in crime had far more of an influence on me than just expanding my vocabulary (and introducing me to the avuncular bunch that I would travel to Blackpool with, inspiring The Big One). I had told him of my authoring aspirations, and the difficulties I had in coming up with plot and structure (it can often, truly, be said of me that I lose the plot). He responded by motivating me through bribery. He bet me 20 pints of beer that I would not finished the manuscript by the end of the year. I think this was 1993. I did finish the first draft, won my 20 pints. And I even dared to send it to a couple of publishers.
In 1998, I did a bit of a re-write. And then I abandoned this "juvenile" work to concentrate on real life and some other, 'proper', writing.
In 2006, I was having a clear out and came across the old manuscript. On the verge of binning it, I read it again, for old time's sake. And it amused me. So I did another re-write, which included the introduction of some brand new charachters, including Maurice Mann, the morris man, and Auberon Dunderfunk.
When I finally discovered the means to self-publish without breaking the bank, I published Dr U Who first as I thought this would appeal to an already-established audience, and it might be an effective way to get my name out there. I then published The Big One. I was eager to get more work out there but, of course, writing takes time. And The Furgle And The Frimp called to me, because it was ready. So it ended up being the third book I published, although it was the first I had actually completed.
It is intended to be the first part of a trilogy. The second instalment would be something of a Star Wars parody, set in space and thwarting an attempted second invasion by the aliens from the first book. The final part of the trilogy will see Aeolus return, and would become a mish-mash of Indiana Jones and Back To The Future, as our heroes embark on a quest through time in order to find the one weapon which could put paid to Aeolus once and for all. Watch this space, because no matter how juvenile it is, I've never been able to let it go, so while somewhat much later than I expected, don't rule out those sequels appearing at some point...
Reviews & Feedback
Loved reading this and reminiscing about my early adulthood as the story incorporates phoneboxes, Citroen 2CV's and many other stereotypes from years ago. Lots of toilet humour, so not for the easily offended ;-).
A really good read and love how seemingly unimportant (rambling) parts of the story become so relevant later on, so pay attention as reading - it's all relevant. The author narrates the story, which adds depth and entertainment. It all comes together in a great crescendo as our hero battles aliens and world domination.
A mix of comedy, romance, thriller and downright silliness - it's a great way to relax - join in the fun - at this price, it's an absolute bargain.
SRC, Amazon.co.uk, 21 Dec 2015
Fun read if you are into puns (especially bodily functions) and classic sci-fi nerdism. I wouldn't recommend it to anybody else but I liked it. A bit heavy on farts, but I was compensated as a 2CV fan by the guest appearance of Flash.
Nils-Fredrik Pedersen, Goodreads.com, 2 April 2017