The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner

Alan Sillitoe

the loneliness of the long-distance runner

i thought this was a novel until i finished the first (title) story and realized that the next chapter had nothing at all to do with the first one. that first one was by far the best for some reason, the voice of the teenage kid in borstal, chosen to participate in a borstal-wide track and field event as a long-distance runner, is excellent. it was adapted into a film in 1962, which may seem surprising — a film out of a short story? but the depth in the story is probably enough.

the rest of the stories, also about the working class in Britain shortly after WWII, are pretty good. nothing astounding, though there is a intriguing dark, dampness to them.

i got this nice hardcover, trade version used in WA. it was a school textbook at one point. i really like the illustration.