The Scarperer : His novel by Brendan Behan
New York : Doubleday & Co., 1964. First edition. Stated. Hardcover. 158 pages ; 22 cm. $3.95 dust jacket with water stain on jacket. Musty odor to pages. Pages are age toned and unmarked. Binding firm.
Ireland's brilliant and outspoken bard laureate —the flamboyant author of Borstal Boy and The Hostage — now turns his attention to the Novel form and makes it his own. Behan deftly conjures up a cheerful, sneerful, riotous tale about a daring jailbreak and an even more daring plot of switched identities...
Through the kind—although solicited— assistance of a mysterious eminence known as The Scarperer a malevolent trio of toughs effects a breakout from Mountjoy Penitentiary. With them is a fellow prisoner, a man called The Limey.
Once outside, The Limey is given ample cause to conclude that he is still not free; The Scarperer has made arrangements to fit him out with a French identity—clothing, papers, a tattoo .. . and to murder him, The Limey's body is to be dumped overboard (from a scow) off the coast of France. Then, according to plan, it shall wash up onto the beach and be misidentified as the cadaver of a certain dastardly Frenchman whose criminal dossier is thus to be stamped fin. Will this daring scheme remain undetected and unpunished? Will the nasty Frenchman live to take advantage of his new lease on a new life? Will success spoil The Scarperer?
Mr. Behan provides as background to this delightful tale a room-at-the-bottom view of Irish and Parisian saloon society, scanning such lovely spots as The Mendacity and The Morning Star, for example, and featuring the likes of Tralee Trembles, and Pig's Eye, and M'sieu le Tramtrack (who, on advice of counsel, remained abed for thirty years to collect damages from a trolley company).
Of Brendan Behans thrilling and explosive Borstal Boy, critics wrote:
"dramatic, high-spirited, funny, tender, compassionate. And intelligent... Mr. Behan is no gifted leprechaun. He is a highly conscious, craftsmanlike, accomplished writer."
John Wain in the New York Times
"remarkable and marvelous .. . the voice of a man who will not be stilled..." Catholic World
"When you cease to notice the four letter words, you become aware that behind them is a shuddering sensibility and the innocence of an acolyte, and at the end you are left with an impression that is ... edifying and inspiring." Frank O'Connor in the Chicago Tribune
"The book is written without great literary cunning; it is less bawdy than has been rumored; it is not quite as funny as the author imagines, and without doubt is the most important book of its kind to be published this century." New Statesman
"... scarcely ever can dialogue have been handled with such a virtuoso understanding of accent and rhythm..." The Times Literary Supplement
"Mr. Behan's prose has the vitality of good talk . . . and it tells us most movingly of the mixture of good and evil in humankind." New York Herald Tribune
"... a dazzling display of Irish pyrotechnics, ranging from the most subtle and exact rendering of the dialogue ... to a veristic account of the filth, squalor, and abnormality of prison life." Library Journal
Q: Can you send me additional photographs of the book?
A: We are always happy to provide additional photographs of the book when a customer request them. Just send us an email via the contact us page.
Q: What are your shipping rates and do you ship overseas?
A: Free Shipping for U.S. buyer. Yes, we do ship worldwide and the price is $25 no matter how many books you buy. Head over to our Shipping page under the link column for further detail.
Q: how do you ship your book? UPS, FedEx or USPS?
A: We primary use USPS but if requested we can ship with FedEx or UPS.
Q: How long will it take for my book to arrive?
A: In general, shipping will take about 3-5 business days within the United States.
Q: What are your return policy?
A: We offer a 30-Day Money Back Guarantee for all purchases regardless of the reason for the return. Further detail about return and refund on our return page under the link column below.
Q: What payment method do you accept?
A: We accept all major credit cards, as well as PAYPAL, APPLEPAY AND GOOGLEPAY.
We are always here to help so if you have any questions, just contact us via Facebook by way of that blue button on the left-hand side or send us an email via our contact us page. We also take phone calls from 10-5pm EST M-F at 617-599-2003.