For fifteen-year-old Martin, growing up in Slough, the summer of 1977 means punk rock, reggae music, disco girls, stolen cars, social-club lager, cut-throat Teds and a job picking cherries with the gypsies. Life is sweet - until he is beaten up and thrown in the Grand Union Canal with his best mate Smiles.
Fast forward to 1988, and Joe is traveling home on the Trans-Siberian express after three years working in a Hong Kong bar, remembering the highs and lows of the intervening years as he comes to terms with catastrophe.
Fast forward to 2000, and Joe is sitting pretty - earning a living as a DJ, selling records and fight tickets. Life is sweet again - until a face from the past forces him to re-live that night in 1977 and deal with the fall-out.
John King is the author of eight novels - The Football Factory, Headhunters, England Away, Human Punk, White Trash, The Prison House, Skinheads and The Liberal Politics Of Adolf Hitler. The Football Factory has been turned into a high-profile film and his books have been widely translated abroad. He has also written short stories and non-fiction for a number of publications over the years, with articles appearing in the likes of The New Statesman, Le Monde and La Repubblica. He edits the fiction fanzine Verbal and lives in London.
"In its ambition and exuberance, Human Punk is a league ahead of much contemporary English fiction"
"King's eye for detail is as sharp as his characters' tongues, and his creations are eminently three-dimensional: insightful and funny one minute, bigoted and ******-up the next"
"Unique and brutal fiction...King is a master of idiom and street slang"
"King's most accomplished and compelling story to date"
"Evokes the punk era superbly"
Independent on Sunday