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Bold as Love - Gwyneth Jones I had high hopes for this, despite the appauling blurb on the back making it sound like a teenage romance novel, but I'm afraid to say that it disappointed me big time.

This is essentially an extrapolation of near future of Britain in which the United Kingdom breaks up into seperate states and an ever more popular and dominant Counter Cultural Movement (CCM) causes the monachy to fold and get replaced by the "leaders" of the CCM who become the head of state (but with real power): Rock stars! The author also anticipates a global economic crisis that basically sets our civilization into decline, a reversing of globalization and a general rise of anarchy and violence.

The narrative is centered around three of important figures (rockstars) in the CCM and we follow and their rise to prominence as the political and social crisis unfolds. The success of this novel depends largely upon engaging with and liking the main protagonists and that's something I found very hard to do. They were certainly realistic, well rounded characters, each with issues, attitudes and humour. But far too much of the book was focused on their personal crisis points and their interactions with each other for my, science fiction wanting tastes. This was far more a book about young people dealing with social upheaval whilst maintaining careers as popular rock stars, leading rock'n'roll life styles whilst personal problems keep bubbling to the surface.

By the end, I was glad it was over and can't see myself rushing out to get the next book in the series. It's the sort of series you can tell is never going to have an ending, a resolution. The reason to go on reading is to follow this crazy gang in their day to day trials and tribulations and watching how they get on with it.