[Read Epub] ♿ Night Haunts: A Journey Through Nocturnal London ♵ Tyrakel.de

For a preview of this book, check out Sukhdev s alley at This is a slim book, and takes even less time to read than that might suggest almost a pamphlet, it wouldn t even have sustained a day s Zone 2 commute and lunch break without support It s also intermittently infuriating at times Sandhu drops sniffy comments about psychogeographers in the mass, even as his own style seems very similar to a 30% less feverish Iain Sinclair At times he makes comments regarding such well worn topics as CCTV and the capital s takeover by Capital which are so received wisdom it s almost tempting to disagree out of sheer contrariness And once or twice, not least with the mention of grindie remember that , it seems bizarrely dated for a book published so recently And yet, in its tour of a cast of nocturnal oddities from sewer workers and graffiti artists to exorcists and helicopter cops and its wanderings through the other city which stirs in the small hours, there s a poetry clear and haunting enough to excuse all that. [Read Epub] ⚖ Night Haunts: A Journey Through Nocturnal London ☦ London At Night Has Always Been Seen As A Lawless Orgy Of Depravity And Pestilence But Is It Now As Bland And Unthreatening As Any New Town Sukhdev Sandhu Journeys Across The City To Find Out Whether The London Night Really Has Been Rendered Neutral By Street Lighting And CCTV Cameras His Nocturnal Forays See Him Prospecting In The London Night With The People Who Drive Its Pulse, From The Avian Police To Security Guards, Urban Fox Hunters And Exorcists He Wades Through The Sewers, Hangs Out With Pirate DJs, And Accompanies The Marine Patrol Looking For Midnight Corpses Beautifully Written, Night Haunts Seeks To Reclaim The Mystery And Romance Of The City To Revitalize The Great Myth Of London For A New Century At first glance, this is exactly my kind of book and probably is for most writers The author picks several wonderfully unusual occupations that go on at night in London and follows them for a shift helicopter policemen, an exorcist, an urban fox hunter, nuns in an enclosed order When I read about this book I could not contain my excitement it is a terrific idea Unfortunately it doesn t deliver at all The book is scant on conveying the actual experience of, say, a night with the avian police We get a few details of what it s like, but the chapter is mostly filled with self indulgent slush where the writer clearly feels we should be listening to him show off his prose The author has obviously spent a night with each of his subjects, but feels that conveying the truth of the experience is not nearly as important as long passages of his writing And his writing is not that good anyway a lot of his sentences are clumsy as though he is trying too hard to be literary He has some impressive endorsements on the cover, but I honestly can t believe that Alain de Botton found it as remarkable as his quote suggests he did Makes me want to go and write the book properly. In Night Haunts Sandhu explores a variety of people in London who are active at night helicopter police, suicide hotline operators, sewage workers, mini cab drivers, fox hunters, and insomniacs all the nocturnal occupants of the city The book is composed of short chapters on each group, each containing brief quotations and descriptions of these individuals, but mostly consisting of Sandhu s eloquent ruminations on these people and their lives Each group compromises an often ignored segment of society that is quite interesting The stories reveal that nocturnal London is very much alive with diverse and unique people struggling to survive.While the passages in this book are very poetic, and the subject matter fascinating, Sandhu often ascribes his own thoughts and flowery language to those he is examining He writes often that they are thinking about things a certain way, and tends, after describing one individual or so in each class, to focus on a group in the aggregate It is a shame that each chapter is not longer and perhaps oriented around the individual stories of the people of each group instead of a general description of their lives punctuated by a few anecdotes The sense of why these individuals do these jobs and live the way that they do is sometimes lost in the focus on each class of people as a whole Sandhu also shows much disdain for the young party goers who dominate many parts of the London nightlife, going out to clubs and bars, and he waxes nostalgic for an over romanticized seedy London of the past, that was perhaps not as wonderful as he imagines.Nevertheless Sandhu can turn an eloquent phrase, and the book does an able job of revealing the lives of London s nocturnal inhabitants. An interesting collection of journalism articles about people who work in London at night What made it interesting though was the choice of occupations, including an exorcist, underground pipe cleaners and mini cab drivers, so then the people who actually did the jobs, because the writer spent little time in actually getting the backstory of the people or doing any character development While the book gives interesting snapshots of nighttime occupations throughout London, it feels brief and a little haphazard What would have made the book read engagingly for me would have been a central narrative that weaved together all stories, perhaps a history of London or some stories about the places travelled to get from one story to the next. A great premise I ve read some H V Morton, who was an inspiration for Sandhu, and Sandhu does him justice in taking further his research into what goes on once darkness falls I think this will appeal to every true Londoner My main gripe is that the language is too blowsy and overdoses on grandiose generalities, not to say stereotypes Thankfully, the tendency in the opening chapters to indulge in hyphenated adjectives, often in succession, declines as the book progresses If you can cut through the overblown turns of phrase, there s a great deal of material to make you think about how London continues to operate as well as it does thanks to the often invisible night workers who clean up the mess, tend the sick and lonely, and police the whole city. I was a little uneasy on reading the introduction to this that Sandhu s rather cerebral style would marr what is the otherwise excellent idea of exploring the city of London through the residents who live life through its long dark nights, but I was soon reassured Sandhu is a great writer, if a little too clever clever at times, and the vignettes of life after dark in the big smoke is genuinely fascinating, creepy, and at times rather moving he is also a keen observer and critic of London s downward drift from a city of industry to a city of profit and overpriced property Recommended as a great one to read on the Tube while going in to a night shift or trundling back from one This is a slim volume but full of unexpected delights In a 24 7 city, what does go on while the rest of us are enjoying its pleasures or dreaming of the day ahead Those wonderful people in the dark or prowling through the city s ripped backsides Sandhu s journeys through night time London immediately brought to mind Gloria Swanson s famous last line in Sunset Boulevard and Iggy Pop s The Passenger Night Haunts is composed of vignettes of the people you never usually see, or don t want to see in the case of graffiti artists, invisible, swallowed up in the darkness Although, in some cases, vital to the city, they remain in its shadows.Sandhu s sharply observed night people include the Met Police s air support unit, night cleaners, the Samaritans, an exorcist , fox hunters and mini cab drivers amongst others There were a couple of them that I would have liked to have been longer but in the main they were just the right length I really enjoyed the contrasts between the people he encountered the amazing aerial views of London enjoyed by the Met and the subterranean lives of the sewer flushers In some ways it was reminiscent of Iain Sinclair s psychogeography and adds a new facet to my image of London As Sandhu says himself in his introduction, he is following in the tradition of H V Morton in exploring a fast disappearing division between night and day as they blend into the aforementioned 24 7 metropolis.A really enjoyable collection of vivid portraits which I would recommend to anyone who s interested in an alternative view of the city and still believes in exploring the twilight world outside the lit streets. I picked this up in a travel bookstore in NYC remember travel bookstores because I read the chapter in which the author follows an exorcist around Clerkenwell It made me remember how much I loved the Mike Carey novels with much the same protagonist except that this story is true It s by far the most interesting story in this book and worth the price I paid for it.The other pieces are of varying depths and therefore of varying appeal The text is written in London slang, some of which I got from context and some of which I had to let pass Even after reading the chapter on mini cab drivers, I m still not sure how they differ from black cab drivers The chapters that shine are the ones where the author spends time with his subjects long enough to individualize them, like the barger on the Thames and the urban fox hunter.There are snide comments made repeatedly about the ravers and other partiers of the London night, but apparently our author couldn t find any to hang out with, because they remain shadowy shallow caricatures There is also a serious lack of women in the book, for whatever reason One would expect there are many working through the London night, even in legitimate jobs.I don t know if this book is available electronically, but that might be a better way to read it, so that you don t have it taking up shelf space afterward.