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A blistering take on Cool Britannia and London’s underbelly in the 1990s, the third novel in Jake Arnott’s loose trilogy following The Long Firm and He Kills Coppers.

It’s 1995, and crime is the new cool. Actress Julie wants none of it as she comes to terms with her hidden criminal roots. But her public-school boyfriend is going all mockney and writing the script of his ‘classic British gangster movie’. Meanwhile, ‘Geezer’ Gaz, wannabe villain, is losing control as he preys on the Essex rave scene. And sixties gang boss Harry Starks is back to haunt them all . . .

New lads meet old lags, celebrity villains mix with media types and Cool Britannia is stripped bare in wickedly sardonic fashion. Welcome to Cruel Britannia.


A rollercoaster journey through a landscape most honest, decent people wouldn't know existed . . . sparklingly witty, immensely profound . . . it should be read as a matter of urgency
Erwin James, <i>Guardian</i>
The most expansive, ironical and funny novel of the series
David Isaacson, <i>Daily Telegraph</i>
The popularity of Arnott's work rests on his fluent, readable style and strong storytelling. While challenging the hype surrounding the genre, he avoids hypocrisy by stopping just short of glamorising his subject matter.
<i>New Statesman</i>
Arnott delivers a beacon-bright satire . . . a literary triumph
Arnott's satire is right on the money
'Arnott's clever, style-conscious book is brutally authentic, yet at the same time ironically "knowing", with an almost satirical attitude to gangster entertainment and the cult of criminal celebrity. Its total readability consolidates his status as a blue-chip crime writer'.
<i>Sunday Times</i>
Arnott has a sharp sense of humour and a real concern for the consequences of crime on his characters and society.
<i>Daily Telegraph</i>
Arnott is both witty and gritty.
<i>Daily Telegraph</i>