A Question of Attraction
By David Nicholls
(Villard, Paperback, 9780812971408, 352pp.)
Publication Date: March 8, 2005
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The year is 1985. Brian Jackson, a working-class kid on full scholarship, has started his ?rst term at university. The usual freshman anxiety over ?tting in is compounded by the gap between his own humble origins and the privileged backgrounds of his better-off classmates.
Brian also has a dark secret—a long-held, burning ambition (stoked by his late father) to appear on the wildly popular TV quiz show University Challenge—and now, ?nally, it seems the dream is about to become reality. He’s made the school team, and they’ve completed the qualifying rounds and are limbering up for their ?rst televised match. (And, what’s more, he’s fallen head over heels for one of his teammates, the beautiful, brainy, and intimidatingly posh Alice Harbinson.) Life seems perfect and triumph inevitable—but as his world opens up, Brian learns that a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing.
Reminiscent of such classic coming-of-age works as The Graduate and Goodbye, Columbus, A Question of Attraction marks the literary debut of David Nicholls, one of England’s most highly praised television writers. It is an unforgettable story of love, class, ?nding one’s place in the world, and the all-important difference between knowledge and wisdom.
DAVID NICHOLLS' teleplay credits include Cold Feet, I Saw You, and Rescue Me, which he also created. He also cowrote the ?lm Simpatico. A Question of Attraction is his ?rst novel. He lives in London.
“I feel for A Question of Attraction as I do the pick 'n' mix counter at Woolworth's: nostalgic, giddy, happy, sick, and then devastated when there is none left. I could not put this book down. I love it. Literally.”
—Alan Cumming, author of Tommy’s Tale
—Mil Millington, author of Things My Girlfriend and I Have Argued About
"A Question of Attraction is the funniest book I've read in years and I am now awash with gratitude that I will never again have to be eighteen, and that my university days are well and truly over."
—Emily Barr, author of Backpack and Baggage
"What a delight. Every five minutes I was shouting 'ha ha ha' and reading out great swathes of hilarious narrative to whoever was in the room. David Nicholls is enormously talented, he has an exquisite eye for detail, humour and the ridiculous and he deserves every ounce of the huge success he will undoubtedly have with this pleasure of a book."
—Anna Maxted, author of Getting Over It and Behaving Like Adults
"Absolutely fabulous. And so painfully reminiscent: God, it whipped me right back. That's exactly what it was like for me. Brilliantly funny."
—Jenny Colgan, author of Talking to Addison and Amanda's Wedding