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Welcome to The Literary Pig's blog - a safe haven for all those afflicted with
the unbearable urge to write.

Monday 26 March 2012

The Radleys - a review

The Radleys by Matt Haig was a summer bestseller for 2011 and one of the most popular selections for the TV Book Club.  I read it over one weekend as once started it was impossible to put down again.

This novel is about a suburban family attempting to live a normal existence in a typical sleepy English village and coping with all the pressures of modern life.  But The Radleys have genuine skeletons in the closet which they are straining to keep secret.  Without giving too much of the plot away this is story about a family of abstaining vampires trying to overcome (or rather subdue) their true natures and failing... And if you can remember what it feels like to be a teenager then just imagine the horror of enduring adolescence suffering both acne and an insatiable craving for blood.
The writing is tongue-in-cheek with an intelligent, quirky sense of humour, but still oddly believable and doesn't stray into pure fantasy.  With short, snappy chapters frequently changing between key characters and their perspective, you are quickly sucked into the the Radleys world and simply have to keep reading.  As all the reviews declare this is a real 'page-turner'.
If you're a fan of the TV drama/comedy Being Human then you'll devour this book, preferably with a nice hot cup of tea and not a glass of rhesus negative.

I loved this book and am keen to read more of Matt Haig's work.  The Radleys gets a FIVE pig rating.
Do also check him out on twitter: @matthaig1 as he often tweets some hilarious one liners.

Other novels by Matt Haig:

  • The Last Family in England/The Labrador Pact (2005)
  • Dead Fathers Club (2007)
  • Shadow Forest 2007)
  • The Possession of Mr Cave (2008)
  • Runaway Troll (2008)
  • The Radleys (2010)


  1. Vampires aren't usually my thing but you are tempting me with this book, Tracy.
    I flicked through Writers Forum in Smiths yesterday (my subscription ran out & I haven't renewed it) and I think I spotted your name on the letters page - well done!

  2. Thanks Sally - yes letter printed in April's WF, just waiting for my notebook now and hoping it doesn't contain real moles!
    Vampires (or fantasy) aren't my cup of tea either but I saw so many rave reviews for this and it lives up to them. Not a horror story either, but just a good ripping yarn. A good book for the holidays.

  3. I'm another person who doesn't usually 'do' vampires but this does sound like it might be good.

  4. I definitely recommend this Patsy - following all the buzz of your book coming out this could be just the novel to relax with... plus all the cake and bubbly of course