Spotlight on: ‘The Snatcher’

by HST UK on January 23, 2012

You may remember Chris Wade from a recent ’13 Questions’ interview we featured on the site a little while back. After that exchange I devoured several of Wade’s books, and marvelled about the ideas that have spawned from his wonky thought box – ‘Cutey and the Sofa Guard’, ‘Tales from the Nanna Home’ and ‘Home in a Tick’ which together make up Wade’s Surreal Trilogy, the literary equivalent I suppose to Edgar Wright’s Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy, which was based upon Krzysztof Kieślowski’s Three Colours Trilogy.

My tummy tingled with excitement when Wade emailed me over a delightful audiobook version of his latest bittersweet bundle of misery ‘The Snatcher’, a modern day morality tale. Since you might not want to read any more of my powder puff promo guff I encourage you to go on right ahead and click here to get it for yourself.

I’ve must confess that I’ve never heard of Hannah Melbourn before. But her narration of ‘The Snatcher’ conjures vivid mental images of the book’s characters with depth, and originality. Melbourn, a singer with the band Nightbus is currently making a big impression in the voiceover scene. I’m not sure what kind of scene this is. I can only assume that baritone bruisers, sultry sirens and husky hounds out-enunciate each other until sunrise.

‘The Snatcher’ begins with a couple named Will and Dawn waiting pensively on the doorstep of a grandiose house. They are there to attend a grotesque dinner party hosted by the wealthy and vile Danny Bruce. Immediately the listener is given plenty of tiny ponderables to chew over. As Wade focusses on eyes that resemble “two wanky little marbles being thrown by a fucked up little hermit”, and a throat is described beautifully as a “wobbling swallower”.

Will and Dawn have been warring over debt because Will had somehow accumulated gambling debts of nearly one hundred grand. ‘The Snatcher’ really is a story to fit these uncertain times. The couple are bailed out by Bruce, a friend of Dawn’s late father. Now tied in with Bruce, the couple must partake in a dinner party that they don’t really feel comfortable with. This is no ordinary dinner party; no Come Dine With Me experience. No, this is an uncomfortably awkward social situation. Wade is able to present awkwardness like Bain and Armstrong has done with much aplomb on Channel 4’s Peep Show.

After Will and Dawn survive the dinner party, which ended in a seedy performance of the finer flesh, they are faced with an unwanted invitation. To, spend a week with Danny Bruce, his alluring much younger partner Linda and their lovable butler Cadbury on board a barge named the ‘HMS Bastard’. This is no ordinary freshwater vessel, nay the Bastard is a modified spiky battle cruiser captained by the almost stereotypically Australian Batty McNightmare. Reluctantly Will and Dawn accept the invitation, and fearfully they float down to the ‘River of Fuck’, a frightening inland Bermuda triangle haunted by a mysterious creature known as ‘The Snatcher’.

For more information about Chris Wade head on over to –

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