No Ashes book this summer will be greater consolation
- LITERARY REVIEW
Oh how we recognise it, we fellow-obsessives, mystifying our friends, slipping off on minor occasions like weddings and funerals for a brief communion with the transistor, greedy for the latest score, returning drawn-faced
[Berkmann has] a casual mastery… and a gift for the amusing image
- DAILY MAIL
Berkmann is a lovely, fluent, witty writer
The Ashes is unarguably the longest and fiercest spoting soap opera the world has known, Fior supporters on both sides, all the other Test series fade into insignificance. The anticipation is always intense, expectations are high, and for England fans, disappointment is almost inevitable, because we usually lose. But it’s a drug we can never kick. How have we got into this state? Can we ever break free?
Shamelessly eschewing balance and objectivity, ASHES TO ASHES looks at every Ashes series since 1972, not from the players’ point of view, nor with the usual lofty historical perspective, but from where we, the punters, were sitting: in the stands, on the sofa, in a traffic jam listening to it on the car radio. It’s a book about suffering and humiliation, and the mere slivers of hope crushed by events. Australians may like reading it too, for completely different reasons.
Marcus Berkmann lives in North London with two small children. An experienced writer and film-maker, he writes regularly for Private Eye, the Spectator and the Oldie. His previous books include RAIN MEN (Abacus, 1996), a look at the idiosyncrasies and obsessions of English village cricketers. In 2005 he appeared on University Challenge as part of the Private Eye team.