Swallow the Swell
Meet Keddy Flett, a beer-bellied twenty-six year old man who needs change in his life. Desperately. And so, with more neuroses than Woody Allen to his disadvantage, Keddy and his Chinese girlfriend Poppy Lin flee Sydney, Australia, in favour of South America.
However, Keddy is about to encounter his demons in the most awkward, tense and socially paralysing way possible – manifested in ‘Bathroom Anxiety’ – in the fear that, at any second, his body will give out and he’ll be stuck in the middle of shitstorm.
Swallow the Swell invites you to hitch a ride in the distorted, sarcastic and hilarious crevasses of Keddy’s brain as he unlocks the mystery to his uncommon condition.
A reformed smoker and drinker for over a year, Keddy Flett’s Swallow the Swell is a glimpse into his alcohol-ridden travels. From Australia originally, he sets off to South America, along with his girlfriend, Poppy Lin.
Having never been bitten by the travel bug myself, and fearing a life of smelly hostels, no hair straighetners and no regular income, I am probably not the best travelogue reader. In good girlie fashion, I was more interested in the relationship between Keddy and Poppy. I found their little pet names to each other endearing – and even hints to Poppy’s healthy displays of sexual jealousy were heart-warming. I was a bit worried that the constraints of their travels were going to split them up at one stage – but I’ll let you discover whether the pressures took their toll.
The main thing of course, was the drinking. Drunkety, drunkety, drunk. Keddy drank his way around South America rightly. At times, he described the state of drunkenness so vividly, it was actually a little ‘trippy’. At others, there was the horrible physical side effects of the drink, which make me realise why he’s now reformed.
This book is an observation – a brave, bitterly honest and extremely amusing observation. Well written in a very unique voice, I found myself chuckling at some cracking one-liners at times.
The book is not heavily plot-based, and there isn’t an insight into his journey of stopping the drink – it’s more like a painting – a vivid description of his travels, his drinking, and his beautiful Poppy Lin.