Our hero, Detective Sergeant Bruce Robertson, is a cross between Harvey Keitel in Bad Lieutenant and John Belushi in Animal House. His task is to nab a killer who has brained the son of the Ghanaian ambassador, but bigoted Bruce is more urgently concerned with coercing sex from teenage Ecstasy dealers, planning vice tours of Amsterdam, and mulling over his lurid love life. He's also got a tapeworm, whose monologue is printed right down the middle of many pages. Here's one of this unusually articulate parasite's realizations: "My problem is that I seem to have quite a simple biological structure with no mechanism for the transference of all my grand and noble thoughts into fine deeds."
Welsh's real strength is comic tough talk and inventive slang. The murder mystery helps organize his tendency to sprawl, but the engine of his art is wry, harsh dialogue. At one point, his books hogged the entire top half of Scotland's Top Ten Bestsellers list--and half the buyers of Trainspotting had never bought a book before. The reason is not that Welsh is the best novelist who ever got short-listed for the Booker Prize. It is that he is that rarest of phenomena, an original voice. --Tim Appelo
Once you get into it the slang and lack of paragraph breaks for dialogue starts to make sense and it's all good from there on out. Read morePublished 9 days ago by Mads
It's a despairing book about a sociopath in Scotland. You'll trust police less after this and be more critical of your own materialistic indulgences. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Dan Murphy
If your read a few of Irvine Welsh's books, you realize that the Trainspotting series was essentially his attempt at "light hearted comedy". Read morePublished 1 month ago by EJon
Eh. I have read serval Irvine Welsh books and enjoyed them but this one didn't interest me. I didn't even bother to finish it.Published 2 months ago by ashley miller
I can't get through his written vernacular, wish I could, Would love to be able to read his stuff.
I think the first chapter is a bout a fart.
Disturbed and ocasionally poetic, Filth is a brilliant character study, a very well written trip into depression with a great endingPublished 7 months ago by calza5