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Urban Grimshaw and The Shed Crew [Kindle Edition]

Bernard Hare
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

You're twelve years old. Your mother's a junkie and your father might as well be dead. You can't read or write, and you don't go to school. An average day means sitting round a bonfire with your mates smoking drugs, or stealing cars. Welcome to Urban's world. Bernard Hare was on society's margins, living on one of Leeds' roughest estates and with a liking for drink and drugs. So he knew what life in the underclass was like in '90s Britain. But even he was shocked when he met Urban, an illiterate, glue-sniffing twelve-year-old. And through Urban he got to know the Shed Crew - an anarchic gang of kids between the ages of ten and fourteen; joy-riding, thieving runaways, who were no strangers to drugs or sex. Nearly all had been in care, but few adults really cared. Bernard decided to do what he could. He didn't know what he was letting himself in for.

Editorial Reviews


'Hare writes with laconic self-deprecation, black humour and a humane, ever present sense of railing against the system that failed Urban and his gang. The book is as exceptional as the bonds he formed.' -- Tina Jackson, Metro 'A damnation of British society that is both violently shocking and laugh-out-loud funny, reading somewhere between a pre-teen Trainspotting and a northern-English equivalent of Larry Clark's Kids ... a memoir with attitude' -- Big Issue 'One of the most astonishing and moving books I've read in years. It shocked me, but the amazing warmth, compassion and humour of Bernie's writing also filled me with hope. This is a must read for everyone from Richard and Judy to Tony Blair. It is a portrait of Britain today.' Louise Sherwin-Stark, Sales 'The most incredible non-fiction I've read all year.' Hugo Hutchison, Marketing 'Truly ground-breaking - the most important book we're publishing in 2005' Richard Peters, Sales

About the Author

Bernard Hare was born in 1958 into a Leeds mining family. He was educated at grammar school and after gaining a BA in Applied Social Sciences at Hatfield Polytechnic, he became a social worker. Dillusioned with the system following the miners' strike of 1984, he dropped out, working occasionally as a removal man. He now writes, plays chess, and works in community arts -- he has edited Reflections, a collection of pieces by the creative writing class at East Leeds Family Learning Centre, and Flatlands (Nov 04), an anthology of writing and a cd of music by local people, organised by the Flatlands Community Arts Group which Bernard co-founded.

Product Details

  • File Size: 478 KB
  • Print Length: 324 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0340837357
  • Publisher: Sceptre (September 13, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005IYIB4U
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,089,055 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Urban Grimshaw and the Shed Crew January 16, 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A fantastic book, funny and moving, It is almost easy to forget that this is a true story from the 21 century, and not from Victorian England. It is worth reading as a work of liturature as much as for the story itself. If nothing else, reading this book should make one appreciate ones own life and how fortunate one is for not experiencing (hopefully) the kind of misery the shed crew members have done. Not all of them had a happy ending, but many did, reminding the the reader of how resiliant the human spirit really is.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very good read! April 15, 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I wasn't sure what to expect when I ordered this book. I was just looking for something different to read. This book has touched on a lot of things very personal to me and it has also really given a good insight on inner city youth. Not just in England, but all over this world. We are not immune to poverty and ignorance, we just choose to look the other way.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Peek into Another World April 15, 2014
By Rebecca
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I would absolutely recommend this book. I ordered it in anticipation of the movie being made (starring Richard Armitage). It is well-written and takes you on quite a ride through a world that most of us never even think about. It's shocking and yet heartwarming to see how these characters make it through (sometimes barely) a life where they've been given no skills, experiences, advantages or support to really be successful. (That said, they "succeed" relative to their reality - they survive.)

Read it ahead of the movie coming out - assuming it shows in the US. There are no real spoilers but it gets you inside the mind and heart of the author, Bernard Hare.

I never would have considered this book if it weren't for Mr. Armitage's choice in movies, but I'm very glad to have read it and recommend it. (My seller was fast and the book was in great shape. I feel guilty having gotten it for 97 cents.)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing, well-written book! April 25, 2014
By MW77
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I very much enjoyed this despite my shock at how these children were left to fend for themselves, but ultimately a tale of survival!
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