Another World presents a contemporary England full of dangers — that is certainly how its inhabitants perceive it — and the novel counterpoints these threats with revenants of the Great War. Nick, an academic psychologist, lives in the ‘shadow of monstrosities’: Peter Sutcliffe, Fred and Rose West and the children who murdered James Bulger are specifically alluded to as the ubiquitous, mediated images of the violence of the age (Another World, 3). Nick is threatened — by the youths in Newcastle’s Bigg Market, by his daughter’s pubescence — but he has also learned threatening behaviour, edging his car at the legs of lads scuffling across the road and gesturing offensively at other motorists (later in the story he is convinced he has run over a girl, as if the aggressiveness of his motoring makes this a likely outcome). The modern everyday is a war zone. Urban dereliction fills the windscreen and serves as an injunction to keep moving — like a war correspondent’s footage on TV; Summerfield, with the old Fanshawe armaments factory boarded-up, is ‘Beirut-on-Tyne’ (11).
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